Covid Response – Re-engaging families
When your volunteer team is ready to restart Scouting, you will need to re-engage and re-energise the young people and their parents. You may come across some potential barriers and here are some ideas on how to overcome these.
Once your volunteer team is ready, it's time to re-engage and re-energise your young people and their families.
You may find that some people will be eager to get their children back to Scouting, whether online or socially-distanced. But for others, personal circumstances may prevent them from joining in straight away.
Potential barriers you may face
- Families are waiting for face-to-face Scouting to return rather than joining online activities.
- Families not wanting to return at all.
- People are wary of using technology or don’t have access to technology or internet (e.g. living in rural or disadvantaged areas).
- Local COVID restrictions may prevent them from joining in face-to-face.
- Young people are ‘Zoomed out’ from home schooling and other commitments that are also taking place online.
- Parents and carers may not have time to organise for their children to take part in online/at home activities.
How to overcome the barriers
- Reiterate what Scouting has to offer and why it's still worth it! Let parents and carers know about the wellbeing benefits of Scouting, especially during these difficult times. You could deliver a family webinar before you start to help deliver this message.
- Create a Buzz around your return and the programme.
- Plan and deliver a blended programme to keep the young people engaged – not all activities need to be online.
- Remind families that online Scouting is a stop gap until face-to-face returns.
- Brief young people and set expectations.
- Reassure parents and carers on how the group will be COVID-safe when delivering face-to-face activities. Ensure to take the needs and vulnerabilities of members into account. This will reassure families and volunteers.
- Online Scouting is also a great recruitment opportunity – parent / carer support is needed more than ever. Engage them in your online activities and use it as a way to recruit those that get stuck in and enjoy themselves.
What can District/Counties do to support?
- If groups are low on numbers for online activities, consider joining them up with other groups in the District that are running good online activities.
- Consider if the District or County team could engage young people on waiting lists and deliver online Scouting.
It's vital to be sensitive about people's situation during this time, however there is a lot of support you can offer as a group to overcome some of the barriers. The best way to identify and understand the challenges is to have a conversation
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