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COVID Compliance Frequently Asked Questions

In preparing the below Frequently Asked Questions, we have reviewed Victorian State Government guidelines and consulted with experts both internally and externally. The safety of our Youth and Adult Members and the wider community is at the forefront of all decisions.

We encourage all Girl Guide members to conduct their Girl Guide activities in the spirit of the Guide Promise and Law to serve our community and be respectful and considerate, while also being optimistic and courageous.

If your question isn’t answered here please email it to the Joyce Price Centre (JPC) team via katie.possingham@guidesvic.org.au.

The below FAQs were published on 27 July 2021. This page will be updated as circumstances continue to change. 

Information about mental health and wellbeing and COVID are also available on our website here.

Looking for the COVID-19 Safety Plan? Check out the COVID-Safe Resources

Victoria (Metropolitan Melbourne and Regional Victoria) under COVID-19 Restrictions

Can my Unit hold normal indoor meetings?

Yes, indoor in-person Girl Guide activities may take place in a Girl Guide Hall or community venue with a density limit of 1 person per 4m2. A COVID Check-In Marshal must ensure that everyone checks in using a QR code (or provides written contact details), and maximum of 100 people per space also applies.

The COVID-19 Safety Plan must be implemented for all activities, and masks must be worn by adults and children over 12 years of age.

Can my Unit hold outdoor activities, including bushwalking and canoeing?

Yes, outdoor in-person Girl Guide activities may take place with a density limit of 1 person per 4m2. A COVID Check-In Marshal must ensure that everyone checks in using a QR code (or provides written contact details), and maximum of 300 people per space also applies.

The COVID-19 Safety Plan must be implemented for all activities, and masks must be worn by adults and children over 12 years of age.

What's a COVID Check-In Marshal, and does my Unit need one?

From the Victorian Government website: “A COVID Check-in Marshal is an employee who is responsible for ensuring that each person who enters a venue uses the Service Victoria QR code to check in on arrival (or an alternative record keeping method, where relevant). A COVID Check-in Marshal can only request that people entering show them confirmation of a successful check-in and cannot compel anyone to do so.”

For Girl Guides, this means a designated Volunteer who checks that every attendee checks in using the QR code, or provides written contact details (name and phone number).

COVID Check-In Marshals are now required for all Girl Guide activities.

Do we have to use electronic record keeping?

Yes. Electronic record keeping using the Victorian Government QR Code Service is required for all Girl Guide activities.

To do this, go online here. Register as your Unit Name. You do not need to enter the Girl Guides Victoria ABN – just skip this step.

How do I set up electronic record keeping?

Go online here. Register as your Unit Name. You do not need to enter the Girl Guides Victoria ABN – just skip this step.

Do we have to wear masks at Girl Guides?

Yes, masks must be worn by adults and children over 12 years of age both indoors and outdoors.

Is my Guide Hall/Scout Hall/Community Centre etc. a 'private venue'?

No, your Guide Hall is not classified as a private venue. Private venues refer to homes, and includes front and back gardens. Visitors to private venues are currently not permitted.

Can parents/guardians enter the Hall to drop-off and pick-up their Girl Guide?

The recommendation is for drop-off and pick-up to occur outside of the Girl Guide Hall or indoor meeting venue – that is, that parents/guardians do not enter the Hall.

If a parent/guardian does need to enter the Hall for pick-up and drop-off (for example, due to poor weather or other safety concerns), the following guidelines must be followed:

  • The total number of people inside the meeting venue must not exceed its maximum capacity at any time.
  • They must sign in using electronic record keeping.
  • Sharing pens and devices for ‘signing’ girls in and out of each Girl Guide meeting is not recommended.

Can parents and other special guests come to my Guide Hall for an award ceremony?

Yes, parents and special guests may attend in-person Girl Guide activities such as Promise or Queen’s Guide Award Ceremonies. A density limit of 1 person per 4m2 applies, and a maximum of 100 people per indoor venue (and 300 people per outdoor venue).

The COVID-19 Safety Plan must be implemented for all activities, and masks must be worn by adults and children over 12 years of age.

One of my Girl Guides requires an adult carer. How does this work?

If an adult carer is required to assist an individual Girl Guide in your Unit (e.g. due to disability), the carer can attend in addition to the adults required to run the activity.

Can my Unit hold overnight events like sleepovers and camps?

Until further notice, Girl Guide camping activities across Victoria, including Regional Victoria, cannot take place.

Can my Unit go on an inter-state trip?

Due to constantly changing border restriction, interstate camps and trips will currently be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the Executive Committee.

Please work through the regular approval process, including submitting an online OUT.01 application and Risk Assessment online no later than 6 weeks prior to the event start date. Be prepared to have multiple review points along the way. Final approval may only be given days before the trip, and will be informed by the most up-to-date COVID rules regarding inter-state travel.

Information about inter-state travel for Victorians can be found online here.

Can my Unit go to a café or a restaurant together?

Yes, Girl Guide Units, including youth members, may meet at a hospitality venue. They must follow venue guidelines, including using the QR code to check in, and the Girl Guides Victoria COVID-Safe Principles.

Can we have food at a Girl Guide activity, such as a cooking night?

Individuals can bring their own food for their own consumption.

Food can also be provided, including food prepared by Girl Guides, as long as:

  • There is no self-service, buffet-style serving. It is recommended that one person serves food according to the GGV COVID-Safe Principles.
  • Hands are washed before and after eating/serving.
  • Utensils and crockery are thoroughly cleaned.
  • Girl Guides must be provided with their own serving and not share food.

Can my Unit sing together?

Yes, you can. Singing indoors and outdoors is permitted with the following recommendations:

  • maintaining a 2m distance between people, and
  • everyone aged 12 years old and up wears a mask.
  • If singing indoors, doors and windows are open to allow for suitable ventilation.

Can my Unit travel together to an activity in a minibus?

Yes, providing the Girl Guides Victoria COVID-Safe Principles are followed – including that everyone aged 12 years old and up wears a mask.

A maximum of 10 people per vehicle applies.

Can my Unit travel together to an activity using public transport?

Yes, providing the Girl Guides Victoria COVID-Safe Principles are followed – including that everyone aged 12 years old and up wears a mask.

Can I carpool to a Girl Guide event with another Girl Guide member not in my household?

Car pooling is not recommended because of the increased risk of transmission in the enclosed space of a car.

Can my Trefoil Guild, Olave Peer Group, or adult Volunteer Team return to normal indoor meetings?

Yes, indoor in-person Girl Guide activities may take place in a Girl Guide Hall or community venue with a density limit of 1 person per 4m2. A COVID Check-In Marshal must ensure that everyone checks in using a QR code (or provides written contact details), and maximum of 100 people per space also applies.

Meetings in a private venue (such as a house) are not permitted.

The COVID-19 Safety Plan must be implemented for all activities, and masks must be worn by adults and children over 12 years of age.

Can my Trefoil Guild or Olave Peer Group hold outdoor activities including bushwalking and canoeing?

Yes, outdoor in-person Girl Guide activities may take place with a density limit of 1 person per 4m2. A COVID Check-In Marshal must ensure that everyone checks in using a QR code (or provides written contact details), and maximum of 100 people per space also applies.

Meetings in a private venue (such as a back garden) are not permitted.

The COVID-19 Safety Plan must be implemented for all activities, and masks must be worn by adults and children over 12 years of age.

Can my Trefoil Guild or Olave Peer Group meet at a café or a restaurant?

Yes, Girl Guide groups may meet at a hospitality venue. They must follow venue guidelines, including using the QR code to check in, and the Girl Guides Victoria COVID-Safe Principles.

Can we hire our Guide Hall out to an external group, such as a dance group?

Yes. Guide Halls can be hired by external groups, providing the density and other COVID Safe requirements are met. Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure that these requirements are met, including that your hirers use QR codes as required.

Questions about Hall hire? Contact the JPC by emailing katie.possingham@guidesvic.org.au.

Do external hirers need their own QR code, or can they use ours?

As QR codes are tied to venues, not groups, your hirers should use the QR code

Can we host a fundraising activity such as a Bunnings Sausage Sizzle?

Yes, as long as your activities are compliant with the Victorian Government guidelines. The Girl Guides Victoria COVID-19 Safety plan must be implemented alongside any COVID-Safe requirements of the host organisation (e.g. Bunnings).

My Unit isn't comfortable with, or isn't able to, hold in-person Girl Guide meetings right now. What should we do?

There is no one-rule-fits-all in returning to in-person Girl Guiding. Some members or Units may choose not to hold in-person Girl Guiding for now. If so, remember to check out all the virtual opportunities on offer on the 2021 Calendar.

Remember to communicate with your Girl Guide Unit – including girls, parents, and all Volunteers – to discuss your plan for Girl Guide activities.

My Girl Guide meeting was attended by someone who has now tested positive for coronavirus. What should I do?

If an attendee at your Girl Guide meeting (including parents completing drop-off or pick-up) has recently tested positive for coronavirus, or has attended an exposure site and is now required to isolate for 14 days, please contact Dani Smith, Janelle Howell, or Michele Stokes.

What will change for Girl Guides when restrictions ease?

Each time there is a confirmed change in restrictions from the Victorian State Government, the JPC team will communicate directly with Leaders and Managers how these changes affect Girl Guide activities. The current restrictions are expected to be in place until at least 11.59pm on Tuesday 10 August 2021.

Questions about Girl Guides Online

What virtual events are happening at a State Level?

Girl Guides have lots of opportunities to continue to grow, learn and discover! Download and read our 2021 Calendar to see all the fun experiences on offer. This calendar includes monthly events for both Youth and Adult members of Girl Guides Victoria such as Friday Night Guides and A Day in the Life of a Girl Guide.

Our Unit is unable to continue with Zoom meetings but I have Girl Guides who want to continue. What can they do?

Encourage Girl Guides to engage with GGTV and take advantage of the wonderful events on offer in the Calendar, including monthly Friday Night Guides.

The Girl Guides in my Unit are tired of Zoom and finding it hard to come up with what they want to do. How can we keep going with Girl-Led under these circumstances?

While we pride ourselves on our Girl Led philosophy and practices, now might be the time for a more structured and/or shorter program that is easier for leaders to deliver and might also be easier and more enjoyable for our girls to participate in. You could plan some favourite activities that your Girl Guides can jump into and lead on the night, like making up a dance to a campfire song. You could choose the topic but your Girl Guides then take the topic and lead the night. Take the best of both and make it work for where your Unit is right now!

For those Units that are working well please continue what you are doing for as long as it works. And for those who are finding this challenging and just plain hard, please feel that you can try new things if you need to. At this time, the most important thing is to enjoy Girl Guides even if that means it looks quite different than it used to.

My Unit has Girl Guides who are turning 18 this year. Do we have to ‘boot’ them out while we’re meeting on Zoom?

No. These Girl Guides can continue to be active participants until you can meet together in person and ‘boot’ them out in a great send off! You can start the Olave enrolment process while they are still participating in your Unit.

Is the paid Zoom subscription worth it or should we stick with the free version?

It depends on what your Unit needs. A paid subscription has additional functions and you get additional time. If you only need 40 minutes, you might want to stick with the free version.

Girl Guides Victoria COVID-Safe Principles

These principles are applicable to all in-person Girl Guide activities, when and where these are permitted to occur.

Read the Principles
  1. Restrict Unit gatherings to the maximum number of people permitted in your area. Complete the COVID-19 Safety Plan checklist for each activity.
  2. Encourage all members to wear a mask when social distancing is not possible. Girl Guides younger than 12 years can choose to wear a mask.
  3. Continue to practice social distancing (1.5 metres).
  4. Cough and sneeze into a tissue or elbow, and dispose of waste thoughtfully.
  5. Practice good hand hygiene and avoid touching your face.
  6. Stay at home and see a doctor if you feel sick or unwell, no matter how small the symptoms.
  7. Show respect for others and yourself, and work together with your Girl Guide friends for everyone’s safety.
  8. If you post images on social media, show how your Unit is complying with the GGV COVID-Safe principles.
  9. Please note: If you or someone you live with are in the high-risk category (aged 70+ years, have a pre-existing chronic medical condition and/or are an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander), you should not commence in-person Girl Guide activities yet, however it is your decision.

Do I need to conduct a Risk Management when planning outdoor activities?

All adventure based activities require a Risk Management document to be conducted and submitted to Girl Guides Victoria. A list of these activities is on Guidelines for Girl Guides. Non-adventure based activities do not require a Risk Management document, however as with all Girl Guide activities you should ask yourself three questions:

  1. What are we doing?
  2. What could go wrong?
  3. How can we make it safe?

A few things to consider when conducting your Girl Guide meetings outdoors are:

  • How to maintain a safe 1.5 m apart from each other,
  • Identifying ‘boundaries’ for outside spaces,
  • How to stay safe when going to the bathroom (e.g. Do Girl Guides go in pairs? Does a Leader need to accompany the pairs?), and/or
  • Stranger danger in public spaces.

Are there resources to help keep my Unit's Girl Guide activities COVID-safe?

Yes, the COVID-19 Safety Plan checklist and accompanying resources are designed to help you prepare your Hall/venue, Leaders, Volunteers, Girl Guides, and parents for returning to in-person Girl Guide activities while we live with COVID-19 as part of our daily lives. This will mean increased hygiene and cleaning processes, and means helping Leaders, families, and Girl Guides practice physical distancing while participating in Girl Guide activities.

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