This page was last updated – 14/01/2022

Scouting in Wales moved to the Yellow readiness level on 2nd December 2021

We are closely following Welsh and UK Government announcements. We will update ScoutsCymru guidance as appropriate. Significant changes will be communicated via email to all members.

Following the announcement from Welsh Government on 14/01/2022 we have the following changes for Scouting in Wales:

  • Adult only activities (including training, executive committee meetings etc.) must be limited to the following numbers:
    • Indoors – a maximum of 30 people
    • Outdoors – a maximum of 500 people

For clarity – activities for young people are exempt from the above maximum numbers. Face to face Scouting can continue, please review and update your risk assessments.

  • 2m social distancing must be adhered to by adults and young people when undertaking activities in indoor spaces that can be accessed by the public during the session or when in communal areas (i.e. toilets, kitchens, hallways).

Existing requirements:

  • Anyone aged 11+ must wear a face covering when indoors, unless they are exempt. This is in line with Welsh Government schools guidance (we recommend the use of known visible methods for people to display if they are exempt, (further details on exemptions can be found here.)
  • All non-residential activities (including young people, Scout Network and adult only groups): No limit on group size, although all activities must be able to safely manage the risk of transmission of COVID and, if this is not possible, they must not take place.
  • Residential activities: Nights away activities may take place, more details in the planning COVID-safe Nights Away in 2021 guidance.
  • International travel should be reviewed in line with the latest Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office travel advice with the awareness that the requirements/restrictions may change at any time. This includes being aware of Government restrictions on travel (both within the UK and in the destination nation), checking with insurance providers that appropriate cover is in place given the changing government restrictions, and that appropriate measures are in place for quarantine upon return. All international trips must consider how the trip will be delivered in a COVID responsible manner and that trips have appropriate approval from the relevant District or County Commissioner and Executive Committee through the Visits Abroad process for any trips to go ahead.

  • Although indoor activities are allowed, to make sure we do all we can to minimise the spread of the virus, we’d encourage you to continue to Scout outdoors where possible, and weather permitting.
  • You no longer need to report cases of COVID in adults or young people to headquarters.

We strongly recommend the use of Lateral Flow Tests to be used prior to any Scouting activity for those aged 11+.

Testing and isolation 

For the latest guidance from Welsh Government on testing and isolation requirements please see: https://gov.wales/self-isolation 

We encourage you to review your risk assessments with the above information in mind.

Do we need Face Coverings?

Anyone aged 11+must wear a face covering when indoors, unless they are exempt (we recommend the use of known visible methods for people to display if they are exempt, further details).

What about residential experiences?

Face coverings should be worn by everyone aged 11+, unless exempt, during residential activities unless eating, drinking or sleeping.  This includes within vehicles and in tents.

What about during demanding physical activities?

When members are undertaking physically demanding activities where a face covering will impede their participation the face covering is not required during the activity, but they must wear it when not participating. For example an indoor climbing activity, the individual climbing can choose to not wear the face covering whilst climbing, but others must wear them whilst not climbing and whilst undertaking other tasks such as belaying.

Do we need Risk Assessments?

Yes. Risk assessments should be reviewed and updated in line with the new guidance and alert level.  Please do not revert to any previous “Yellow” risk assessments as the restrictions were different at the time they were written.  Instead, risk assessments should be adapted from their current state or rewritten if needed. There is still no requirement to submit them through a portal system. Risk assessments should be signed off and kept locally with all relevant volunteers having access to them.

Can residential activities  go ahead?

Residential activities will no longer be limited by group size or the numbers sharing accommodation. This means more flexibility for Groups when planning their nights away activities, though members are still required to plan activities in ways which aim to minimise the spread of COVID-19.

What reasonable measures should I consider taking to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus?

While it is impossible to mitigate the risks completely, there are some measures which are reasonable to take, and members are expected to include these in their planning and risk assessments. There are some examples of reasonable measures below. The measures you take should be informed by your Covid Specific Risk Assessment and aim to reduce the risk of coronavirus spreading during your activities or at your premises and should be tailored to your specific circumstances.

What are some examples of reasonable measures? (this is not an exhaustive list)

Reduce the chance of coronavirus being present

  • If a volunteer, parent, visitor, or a child becomes unwell or symptomatic while attending the setting they should leave the setting immediately and follow the advice on Test, Trace, Protect, including self-isolating and arranging a test.
  • Parents, visitors, and children who are symptomatic or have tested positive for COVID-19 must not attend the setting and must strictly follow the self-isolation guidance.
  • Rapid lateral flow testing for young people aged 11+  and volunteers at Scouts is strongly recommended for some activities such as for residential activities, as shown in the readiness level tables.

These tests give a result in 30 minutes using a swab and a small testing strip. If you’re doing lateral flow testing as part of a Scouts residential activity, take a look at the planning a COVID-safe nights away in 2021 guidance to see when and how frequently you will need to test everyone.

Lateral flow testing is designed to be used by people without symptoms, if anyone is displaying symptoms of COVID-19 then they should return home and have a PCR test.

Prevent crowding

  • Limit numbers or control movement of people so that where possible people can safely distance themselves from others. For example, use one-way systems to enter or walk around the premises and control the movement of people coming together in confined areas such as toilets.
  • Maintain social distancing between adults and children over 11 both during and outside of sessions. While it is generally accepted very young children are not good at distancing, other adults and older children should still try to distance from one another.
  • Control entry and exit points to prevent people coming together. Limit your capacity
  • Reduce numbers. In determining the capacity of the activity, the number of people who may attend at any one time, remember that lowering numbers will reduce the extent to which close physical interaction will occur, by reducing the potential for crowding.
  • Spreading people evenly across the venue so that they don’t gather in disproportionate numbers in one room or space.

Improve your ventilation or go outside

  • Encourage use of outdoor space where this is available.
  • Enhance airflow by opening windows and propping open internal doors (but not fire doors) where possible and where safe to do so. As children will attend these premises there will be some premises where opening windows or doors may increase the risk of children injuring themselves or leaving the premises unsupervised, so this should form a part of any risk assessment
  • If there is a lack of natural ventilation, ensure mechanical ventilation systems provide 100% fresh air and do not recirculate air from one space to another.
  • Make sure mechanical ventilation systems are effectively maintained and have been serviced.
  • Monitor CO2 levels to identify areas where ventilation may be poor. Poor ventilation may result in a higher level of CO2 within the premises, this can be an indicator of how easily Covid particles can spread within your building. You may wish to use a CO2 monitor to help evaluate this risk.

For further information on getting back together safely, including guidance and templates for risk assessments please see the main Scouts website.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us using admin@scoutscymru.org.uk