The terms ‘new normal’ and ‘COVID-safe’ are thrown around a lot nowadays. But what do they actually mean, and how are we at Sports For Champions planning on creating a ‘COVID-safe’ environment for our events in future?
Firstly, the most obvious form of creating a safer environment is by switching up the environment entirely. We do hold virtual events and provide the same experience through the medium of video conferencing software’s such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams. These are usually extremely similar to our average content, except hosted online.
However, this can mean that participants are less involved or feel a little distant from our athlete, while this is true, it isn’t something that can be avoided unfortunately.
While we strive to deliver the same experience via our online events, nothing can beat seeing a medalling athlete in front of you.
So, with the possibility of schools returning to in-person learning becoming less of a distant memory with every day that passes, we at Sports For Champions have been focussing on creating an event that adheres to all restrictions whilst delivering that connection of a typical Sports For Champions fundraising event.
Secondly, we plan on implementing social distancing protocols that our athletes will stick to. This is the most important part of any sort of COVID-safe and in-person event.
We have trained our athletes to comply with these protocols and have even had them complete an ‘Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) Course for Novel Coronavirus’. Certified by the WHO, our athletes all have an in-depth understanding of how the Novel Coronavirus spreads and how to prevent it from spreading.
The course covers general prevention protocols such as proper hand sanitisation methods, social distancing, track and trace methods in order to prevent further spread, and proper mask use.
Here’s what our managing director, Darren Emmanuel has to say in regards to the training carried out by our staff and athletes:
“It was hand sanitisation, keeping themselves and others safe. I asked each athlete to complete that online course [IPC WHO Course] and then at then at the end of the course that certificate is e-mailed to us which is then forwarded to schools when they book with us”
In addition to this, we have used this training in order to ensure any of the athletes, their personal equipment, SFC thank you rewards they give to children, or anything posted from our office direct to your school goes through our four step sanitizing protocol. Giving you the confidence that you are fully protected against the COVID-19 virus when coming into contact with our athlete. We do this by enforcing a handful of different rules, including; Our ‘4 Step Sanitising Procedure’ in the office when posting our welcome pack to your school:
Step 1 – Preparation. Remove loose dirt and particles, if any.
Step 2 – Cleaning. Wash with hot water (60 °C) and an alcohol based detergent.
Step 3 – Sanitising (bacteria killing stage) Treat non porous surfaces i.e athlete medals with hot, clean, water (75 °C) for at least 2 minutes. Porous surfaces i.e. sponsor forms, are with sprayed with sanitiser.
Step 4 – Air drying.
This is only one of the dozen rules and regulations we have set out throughout our athlete network to prevent further spread of COVID-19. Read more about these rules in our ‘School Coronavirus Policy’ letter here.
Of course, right now there is a lot of uncertainty and this can affect the events that we hold. However, we strive to deliver on our promise and are willing to reschedule or reconfigure any event in order to finally have it go ahead as smoothly as planned.
In the event of an athlete having to self-isolate whether it is because they have developed symptoms or have been in contact with a known case of the COVID-19 virus or even in the event of a student testing positive resulting in the class having to self-isolate we will always strive to reconfigure our events to another date in line with all government guidelines.
If one of our athletes develops symptoms or tests positive for the COVID-19 virus following an event, we will notify you and begin to track and trace any individuals that could have been in danger of infection.
However, the fact of the matter is that with the regulations and rules we have set out, we hope that this situation won’t ever happen. In the event of a scenario such as this one arising, our managing director, Darren Emmanuel has given me this statement:
“We advise that all athletes follow government guidelines at all times and that they contact us as soon as possible should they develop any symptoms at all, we then instruct them to get a test as we proceed to contact the school providing they either have an event coming up or have visited a school within the last fortnight”
Throughout the duration of this ongoing situation we have strived to create an experience similar to that of our previous events, all while adhering to government rules and regulations, although this means it won’t be the same as it always has been, we are committed to still putting on a show and will always keep the best interests of the children and staff in mind, no matter the scenario.
We are continuing to provide these COVID-safe workshops and events. Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us on our social media accounts (@sports4champs on both Instagram and Twitter along with Sports For Champions UK CIC on Facebook), via a call or e-mail. Whatever suits you!