The Scout Motto is “Be Prepared” and the eleventh point of the Scout Law is “A Scout is Clean.” With that in mind, Scouts and leaders should educate themselves on the steps to prevent illness and help others to do the same.
The same simple steps that prevent the spread of ordinary flu viruses work against coronavirus and other illnesses:
- Stay home when you feel sick.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (sing “Happy Birthday” twice), especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, and wash your hands before and after doing so.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve/elbow, not your hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Do not share personal items such as cups, water bottles, eating utensils, etc.
- Avoid shaking hands.
You can help share accurate information about coronavirus and healthy practices by using these infographics on social media, courtesy of the Pennsylvania Department of Health.
Coronavirus predominates conversations and the news media, so it’s important to be able to talk with children about the subject. Here are some recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Remain calm and reassuring.
- Make yourself available to listen and to talk.
- Avoid language that might blame others and lead to stigma.
- Pay attention to what children see or hear on television, radio, or online.
- Provide information that is honest and accurate.
- Teach children everyday actions to reduce the spread of germs.
The CDC is recommending to be careful with meetings and travel and use teleconferencing when possible. Here are some free online communication tools:
With many schools closing, families may be looking for some free activities they can do at home. Here are a just a few ideas for kids, parents, or the whole family:
- Take virtual museum tours
- Take an online course
- Make some music
- Progress along the Cub Scout Advancement Trail
- Watch TED Talks to get “ideas worth spreading”
- Visit TED-Ed to watch “lessons worth sharing”
- Find a merit badge that you may want to earn
- Listen to podcasts like CubCast or ScoutCast
- Make your own word games
- Make homemade playdough
- Practice knot tying
- Take advantage of the online learning opportunities for Scout leaders
Please take the necessary precautions to keep yourself, your loved ones, and the community around you safe and healthy. Check-in with older adults and those with chronic health conditions. Remember, Scouts help other people at all times.
The Cradle of Liberty Council has created a website to provide our Scouting family with updates and resources at colbsa.org/coronavirus.
Please note: The Cradle of Liberty Council, BSA is not responsible for the content of external websites nor does it endorse the products or advertisements therein. We encourage parents/guardians to review prior to sharing with children.