March 25, 2022
Dear Girl Scouts, Volunteers, and Family Members,
The health and safety of our members and volunteers, their families, and our staff are of utmost importance. We continue to monitor the information regarding COVID-19 shared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as GSUSA and national public health officials to inform our decisions. New information is reported regularly, so we remain responsive in planning and scheduling, and thank our members and families for their support and flexibility. We must all follow the Girl Scout Promise and Law, and we must be responsible for our own health and for our impact on the health of others.
Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) strongly encourages individuals to be vaccinated and stay up to date but does not require vaccination for volunteers or members at this time. Deciding to receive a vaccine is a personal decision, and GSGCF encourages our staff and members to respect the privacy of fellow members and their families and should not inquire about their vaccination status. Parents/caregivers may certainly ask about the vaccination status of volunteers, but volunteers are under no obligation to disclose their personal vaccination status. Also, under no circumstances should a volunteer discuss the personal healthcare decisions of another volunteer or member with anyone.
All troops should monitor the CDC and local restrictions for gatherings, events, and travel. Restrictions can vary greatly and frequently change. If the area in which your activity will take place is more restrictive, you must follow the local requirements.
Troop Camping, Travel, and Overnight Stays and Trip Planning
If your troop agrees and understands the inherent risks, troop camping, travel, and overnight stays are permitted. Troops should continue to practice good hygiene and COVID-19 risk mitigation guidance while traveling. Girls should be involved in all stages of trip/travel planning. Ensure all troop families agree with the type of trip/travel being planned and are prepared to follow council guidelines and requirements imposed by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including those of local business.
Hygiene and COVID-19 Risk Mitigation
Volunteers, girls, and parents/caregivers should follow CDC guidelines and not come to Girl Scout activities if they become sick with COVID-19 symptoms or test positive for COVID-19; and individuals should follow CDC guidelines based on their vaccination status if they have been in close contact to someone with symptoms or someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.
Follow the resources developed by credible public health sources, such as CDC or the local public health department. Share these resources with girls and volunteers and ensure that they are practiced during meetings and activities. Remind girls and volunteers to engage in everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, such as:
- Individual must stay home if sick, or showing any symptoms of illness.
- Masks are optional. Respect the mask wearing of others when preferred. Masks are not worn when sleeping, or when participating in strenuous or water-related activities.
- Aim to maintain 3-6’ social distance from others as much as possible.
- Plan activities to take place outdoors as much as possible.
- When carpooling, keep car windows open, at least slightly, to circulate fresh air.
- Aim to allow at least 3 feet between the heads of individuals while sleeping. All girls and adults should sleep toe-to-toe or head-to-toe based on layout.
- Cough and sneeze into a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash, and wash or sanitize your hands.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Wash hands if you do touch.
Reporting and Communicating a Positive COVID-19 Test
In the event of a positive COVID-19 test result, the troop leader will submit the COVID-19 Exposure Reporting Form with the roster of all girls and volunteers involved in the activity. A council staff member will send an email to the parent/caregiver of any girl who may have been exposed, to volunteers, and to the facility, maintaining the confidentiality of the individual(s). Girl and volunteer health information is private and strictly confidential. Members should follow the CDC guidelines for quarantine and isolation based upon their individual vaccination status.
Acknowledgement of Risk
COVID-19 is an extremely contagious virus that spreads easily through person-to-person contact in the community. Everyone must take all reasonable precautions to limit exposure for girls, volunteers, families, and the community. As with any social activity, participation in Girl Scouts could present the risk of contracting infectious illnesses like COVID-19. While Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida takes safety and preventative precautions, GSGCF can in no way guarantee that exposure to COVID-19 or other infectious illnesses will not occur through participation in Girl Scout program activities.
GSGCF staff is available to assist you by phone or email during our business hours, Tuesday–Friday, 7:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Office hours are by appointment only. Contact customer care at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 800-232-4475.
Please regularly monitor our website, social media, and email for further updates and directives. Be sure to check your email “spam” boxes as well. Note: we will keep this page updated as situations change, so please check back if you are looking for the most up-to-date information.
For additional information and resources about COVID-19, we recommend the following:
- CDC website—The CDC publishes its latest updates, health tips, and country-specific travel information.
- How to Talk to Your Kids About Coronavirus—Tips from the GSUSA Raising Awesome Girls page about how to talk to girls not by avoiding the topic, but by tackling it head-on. Tambien en Español: Cómo Hablar Con Su Niña Sobre El Coronavirus