Troop Meetings. Troops may meet in person or virtually. Use the
helpful information in the CDC’s How
to Protect Yourself & Others guide to minimize risk and
Virtual Troop Meetings. Online meetings are terrific alternative offering girls and troops lots of connections and benefits. Badge-earning programming and essential girl-to-girl connectivity can easily happen at Zoom meetings.
Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma has Zoom accounts available for troops to use at no charge for the membership year 2022. To request your Troop Zoom account information, complete the GSEOK Zoom Activation Form, this may take up to 7 – 10 business days to receive your account information and instructions.
In-Person Troop Meeting Locations. Outdoor spaces where social distancing can be maintained are strongly recommended for meetings. Additionally, Girl Scout offices, program centers, and service centers are open for taking reservations for troop meetings. If you are interested in making a reservation for one of our properties, email firstname.lastname@example.org to check for availability.
GSEOK sites available for reservations:
McAlester Service Center
Bartlesville Service Center
Ponca City Program Center
Hardesty Leadership Center
For meetings held in public buildings, contact the facility ahead of time and ask:
Is the space cleaned, and touch surfaces (i.e., tabletops, light switches, chairs, etc.) sanitized daily?
Who else uses the space? Is the space cleaned between groups?
What type of faucets/soap dispensers are available in the restroom (sensory or manual)?
Consider whether you can supplement cleaning practices. For example,
plan to bring sanitizing wipes to wipe down surfaces when you arrive.
If faucets are manual, take some time to show girls how to shut them
off with a paper towel. Use paper towels for doorknobs whenever
Troop Meetings in the Home. Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma and Girl Scouts USA do not recommend in-home meetings and do require prior council approval if a troop requests to meet in their home.
Backyard Meetings. For back and front yard meetings, make sure that the grounds are completely safe for children. For example, be careful that pools are fenced or otherwise safely sectioned off. The same goes for any equipment or tools or recreational apparatus that is deemed unsafe for girls such as outdoor trampolines. Make sure that pets are kept separate from the girls meeting space. Ensure that both the troop leader and co-leader can see girls and monitor their whereabouts at all times. Maintain the use of the buddy system for errands or bathroom breaks. If the property is large, ensure that the meeting space is kept distinctly separate from non-members.
Transportation (carpooling). It is imperative to take all safety precautions when girls are traveling in motor vehicles. If possible, girls from different households should not carpool. Coronavirus transmission risk is high when people are in close proximity less than six feet apart. The risk increases when people are in a closed-in area or indoors for longer than 10 minutes. When transporting girls, always space out the girls to avoid crowding and keep the windows partially open to provide ventilation. While masks are not required, masks are recommended. Please review the CDC’s mask recommendation for the county you are going to ahead of time. Make sure parents are aware ahead of time if girls will be in a car together. Always, for every in-person event, meeting, or transportation arrangement, conduct the pre-screening process to ensure that coronavirus does not touch Girl Scout gatherings.
Large Group Gatherings. When planning large gatherings, follow CDC and GSEOK recommendations and guidelines. Make sure social distancing can occur. Volunteers should review the mask recommendation from the CDC for the county in the event will be held in.
Answers to the following questions will guide this decision:
· Is the event indoors or outdoors? (Outdoors is safer than indoors.)
· Can social distancing be maintained?
· What county will the event occur in?
· What is the local transmission rate of that county?
Day Trips and Activities. In conjunction with Safety Activity Checkpoints, follow the same guidelines found in the Troop Meetings and Hygiene sections of this document.
Look ahead to review the CDC recommendations and review the
COVID-19 by County. If the activity of sporting equipment is
being provided, ask the provider if they wipe down equipment in
between uses. Make whatever appropriate accommodations are necessary.
For example, bring extra sanitizer if none will be provided for public
use at the activity location. If the trip will need to include plans
for a meal, it is best to eat outside and/or each girl bring a packed
lunch from home whenever possible. When not possible, an indoor eating
experience should be at a location where social distancing is
Overnight Stays. Although travel plans are often arranged several months in advance, we recognize that the COVID-19 risk is fluid; it can and will change, and contingencies should be planned ahead of time for rescheduling, canceling, or pivoting to a virtual activity. Please follow the normal process for submitting the 585F Request for Approval of Activity Requiring Council Permission.
Note: These recommendations and requirements are for troop activities. Council-level program events and trainings may have additional safety protocols.
Hygiene, First Aid and Face-Covering
It is important to continuously follow our state and local health
organizations and the CDC in the latest recommendations to reduce the
risk of transmission.
Below is a shortlist for volunteers to consider for in-person gatherings:
· Pre-screening and Symptoms Check forms are used
· Girls and adults wear masks in counties where the CDC has deemed high risk, COVID-19 by County. This status could change weekly, please check accordingly.
· Outdoors is preferred to indoors, whenever possible
· Always maintain 6 feet distance
· Wash hands
· No touching the face
· Carry disinfectant and make sure girls are using it as appropriate
· Girls bring their own snacks and supplies whenever possible
Pre-screening and Symptoms Check. Prior to in-person troop meetings and activities, all participants should be screened to ensure:
· they are healthy and have not experienced symptoms that are associated with COVID-19 in the previous 72 hours,
· that they have not knowingly been in contact with someone that has exhibited symptoms or has been confirmed positive with COVID-19 or a person waiting to see if they are positive; and,
· that they have not been to any high-risk geographical regions particularly those regions that require a 14-day or otherwise specific quarantine period.
Face Coverings. Masking indoors is no longer required. Masking
is voluntary. The status of each county may change weekly. Please
check your current status on the CDC’s COVID-19
by County for guidance in your local area. This status could
change weekly, please check accordingly.
Be Prepared. Be prepared with first aid supplies including COVID-19 prevention items such as hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol), tissues, disposable facemasks, and disinfectants. Easily accessible trash baskets or bags should be supplied for meeting and activity space, if not already available. Disposable or no-contact thermometers may be added to supplies if available and not cost-prohibitive, however, caregivers should be checking temperatures and allowing their girls(s) to join group activities only when temperatures are normal.
Routinely clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that are frequently touched (i.e., tabletops, markers, scissors, etc.). Use a household cleaner, or see the EPA's list of effective cleaners approved for use against COVID-19. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products (e.g., concentration, application method and contact time, etc.). See the CDC’s website for more on cleaning and disinfecting community facilities.
Personal Contact. Hugs, handshakes, high-fives, and even activities like the friendship circle can transmit COVID-19 from person to person and therefore discouraged. Create a safe way for girls and volunteers to greet and end meetings instead (like tapping elbows). Note: Use culturally appropriate messages, materials, and resources.
Troop Meeting Reminder. Share your plan for in-person troop meetings with families. Ask caregivers to go over it with their Girl Scout before the meetings so she understands that there may be some differences. For example, she may be asked to use hand sanitizer when she arrives at the meeting. If girls know what to expect it will be easier for them to adapt to the new troop meeting style.
Reporting COVID-19 Positive Incidents
If you or someone in your troop tested positive for COVID-19 and had recently attended a Girl Scout activity, please email Katie Gill Miller, at email@example.com or call at 918-745-5228 to discretely inform the council.
Acknowledgment of Receipt and Understanding
All participants of Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma acknowledge that COVID-19 is a contagious virus that spreads through person-to-person contact. As with any social activity, participation in Girl Scouts could present the risk of contracting COVID-19. While GSEOK takes every safety and preventative precaution, GSEOK can in no way warrant that COVID-19 infection will not occur through participation in GSEOK programs.