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Council COVID Update -- Oct 23, 2020

Voyageur Council COVID Update
October 23, 2020
 
In-Person Scouting Permitted for Parts of Voyageur Council
Based on local Public Health Unit recommendations
 
Dear Scouters,
 
We appreciate everyone's patience, feedback, resilience, and dedication throughout our temporary return to Stage 1 Scouting. We recognize that there have been additional challenges associated with returning to virtual Scouting, and thank all of our Scouters who have continued to deliver amazing program to our youth under these circumstances.
 
While we have previously moved forward with a modified Council-wide implementation of Stage 1 Scouting, growing differences in recommendations by specific public health authorities means that this approach does not accurately reflect current circumstances. As such, Voyageur Council will be moving forward with a geographically-limited model which will align each Group with their respective Public Health Unit (PHU) and the restrictions that their PHU have put in place, as well as provincial and federal guidelines.
 
We encourage all Scouters and Groups to determine which PHU their Group falls under, and to look at the specific restrictions in place in their region. For clarity, all Groups continue to need to abide by provincial and federal regulations as well.
 
This means that effective today, October 23, Groups that fall under the following Public Health Units may re-open limited in-person activities according to Scouts Canada's Stage 2 guidelines:
 
 
Groups that do not fall under the Health Units listed above remain restricted to Stage 1 Scouting at this time. This includes all Groups under:
 
 
Please note that, in all cases, whether or not a Group can move to Stage 2 depends on the normal meeting location(s) of the Group pre-COVID. Additional clarity around this point, as well as further details about future potential changes to the Scouting Stage of each Council/Group in accordance with changing situations, is available at the new COVID-19 FAQ on the Scouts Canada website. As noted in the updated COVID-19 FAQ, Groups based in Stage 1 regions may not travel to Stage 2 regions to conduct Scouting activities, nor may Groups in Stage 2 regions travel to Stage 1 regions to conduct Scouting activities. For additional clarity around this point, please see the first five questions under the new COVID-19 FAQ. We encourage all Groups to consult with their Relationship Manager to ensure that everyone is clear as to which Public Health Unit guidelines they need to abide by, on top of provincial and federal regulations.
 
We recognize that this pause has impacted fall plans and we sincerely hope we will be able to safely return to in-person activities in all regions soon. For those who are returning to in-person activities, we encourage you to enjoy the outdoors as much as possible! As in-person Scouting may not be possible on the same schedule as pre-COVID, we encourage all of our Scouters to review all of the virtual resources available at https://www.scouts.ca/news-and-events/covid-19/welcome-back-resources.html and to check out the training modules available through the David Huestis Learning Centre.
 
Looking for other ideas for what your Sections could get up to during the in-person pause, or what you might be able to do with younger Sections when the weather becomes colder? There will be news coming soon about a Scouts Canada Virtual ScoutCon, which will feature sessions on those topics (and many more) throughout the month of November! There is also additional information below about an upcoming opportunity for members of the Council to speak to the Voyageur Council Voting Members, ahead of our National Annual General Meeting (AGM) in November. There are also exciting new resources available regarding Personal Achievement Badges (PABs) and Scouts Canada's partnership with the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that can help provide additional virtual meeting ideas and challenges for the youth in your Section.
 
For those moving back into Stage 2, please also see some great news below regarding Camp Opemikon!
 
This message, as with our previous emails, will be made available on our Council COVID page and on our Facebook Group.
 
Thank you once again for all that you've done, all that you continue to do, and for all that you contribute to Scouting.
 
Yours in Scouting,
 
Voyageur Council Key 3
Paige Gladwin (Council Youth Commissioner), paige.gladwin@scouts.ca
Nicolas DesRoches (Council Commissioner), nicolas.desroches@scouts.ca
Christopher Blais (Interim Council Relationship Manager), christopher.blais@scouts.ca
 
 
Camp Opemikon Opening for Day Use as of November 7th
 
For those of you moving to Stage-2 Scouting, Camp Opemikon will be opening to groups as of November 7th for outdoor day use.
 
Camp Opemikon is located in Maberly Ontario, just one hour from Kingston. For more information or to book your space please go to Doubleknot link.
 
If you have any questions or would like to discuss your booking options in detail, please feel welcome to contact the Camp Director, Alisha Behme, at alisha.behme@scouts.ca or (613) 246-2222. 
 
Reminder: You're Invited to a Discussion with our Council Voting Members!
 
To all Fellow Scouters in Voyageur Council,
 
Earlier this summer Voyageur Council elected three voting members to represent Voyageur Council at the Scouts Canada Annual General Meeting in November. Thank you for electing Geoff Priems (1st Bayridge Group Commissioner, geoffrey.priems@scouts.ca), Cam Thomas (Troop Scouter 1st North Grenville and 1st Manotick, cthomas@scouts.ca) and Quinn McKinney (Rideau Area Rover Crew, quinn.mckinney@scouts.ca) as your Council Voting Members. Our main role is to vote on matters raised at the Scouts Canada Annual General Meeting, such as accepting the auditor’s report and most importantly, voting in the election of members to the Board of Governors (BoG) for the next year. The BoG sets policy for Scouts Canada, appoints senior National staff and generally oversees Scouts Canada operations.
 
We also have a role to provide an avenue for Ordinary Members (all Adult Volunteers and Youth Members over 14 years old) to express issues and concerns to the Board of Governors and senior staff. Although we as voting delegates do NOT establish policy or oversee the operations of Scouts Canada, we have an opportunity to engage with Board members and senior staff, offer suggestions and constructive criticism.
 
With this in mind we have a few questions for you:
  1. What are the major challenges and issues facing you right now as a Scouter?
  2. How are things going with your group and program?
  3. If there was one thing you wanted to say to the Board of Governors, what would it be?
 
Please send your responses to the three of us (emails above) along with anything else you‘d like us to pass on to the Board of Governors.
 
We are also planning at least one Zoom call with any of you that would like to take part to discuss Scouting issues and items you would like us to carry up the line. The date for this call is Thursday, October 29 from 7:30 to 9:00 PM. To register, please use this link: Council Voting Member Feedback Session Registration.
 
We realize everyone is full on with family, work and Scouting matters during this crazy time, but if you have time we would love to hear from you. We can’t promise to resolve your issues but we commit to bringing them forward to the Board and senior management. 
 
Yours in Scouting,
 
Quinn McKinney, Geoff Priems, and Cam Thomas

 

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