COVID-19 Mitigation for In-Personal Cultural Programs/Activities

Cultural organizations continue to find ways to adapt to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, including how to safely resume in-person programs and activities within current public health guidelines. SaskCulture has put together the following information to help organizations prepare their venues, staff, facilitators/instructors, and participants for the continuation of safe, and enjoyable, in-person activities. Please keep in mind that this information is meant to serve as signposts only, and it is still strongly recommended that everyone keep up-to-date on Saskatchewan’s latest public health measures, and the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan.

PURPOSE: This guide was created to assist cultural leaders, facilitators/instructors, host sites, participants and staff in the proper protocol for holding cultural activities in the safest manner possible in accordance with Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) guidelines and the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan.  There are three sections:

  • What organizers need to know;
  • What facilitators/instructors need to know
  • What to share with participants.

WHAT ORGANIZERS NEED TO KNOW

As organizers and leaders in the cultural community, it is important that we all ensure that our cultural activities/programs/services are delivered in the safest manner possible, in accordance with SHA guidelines and the Province of Saskatchewan’s Re-Open plan.  While networking and social engagement are an essential part of cultural activities, it is important that we all demonstrate how programming can effectively, positively and safely continue with a few adaptations.  In addition, organizers must take on the responsibility of ensuring that those involved in delivery, including staff, facilitators/instructors and participants, have the instructions, signage, tools and supplies needed for the best possible experience.

 

KEY UNDERSTANDINGS for ORGANIZERS:

  • Organizers must help ensure that programs/services follow current provincial public health guidelines;
  • Organizers must provide a safe and sanitized venue with good ventilation for all activities;
  • Organizers must ensure that facilitators/instructors and staff are aware of and follow appropriate public health guidelines and precautions and have adapted activities accordingly; and
  • Organizers should take the opportunity to promote all COVID-19 precautions to potential and registered participants.
 

PRE-ACTIVTY

  1. First of all, only organize activities that are able to abide by current provincial health protocols and guidelines.
  • Currently, indoor gatherings are limited to 15 people;

  • Large public and private gatherings – indoors and outdoors – are prohibited.  Effective June 22, 2020, indoor gatherings of up to 30 are permitted where space allows for two metres (6 feet) of physical distancing between participants.  Outdoor gatherings of up to 30 people are permitted with appropriate physical distancing.

  • Some different businesses have different requirements – please review the applicable public health orders at Re-Open Saskatchewan.

  • Currently gatherings for worship or drive-in activities are the only activities allowed to increase numbers beyond 30 people.  Where seating areas allow adequate physical distancing – multiple groups of 30 are permitted.  These groups must be separated by two metres (6 feet), unless they are part of the same family.  Other groups of 30 must be arranged in the same way and spaced from other groups by a minimum of five metres.

  1. Work with the venue to ensure that all requirements are in place

Organizers need to:

  • Confirm number of participants based on registrations received with venue host; group sizes can be adjusted according to facility size;

  • Place any tables, chairs and other equipment in the space available to provide at least two metres (6 feet) of social separation; if distancing cannot be maintained during the program, masks should be worn;

  • Ensure the space is properly cleaned and disinfected prior to the start of each program; outline cleaning processes in the facility, including how often areas need to be disinfected, specifically the room, washrooms and other common areas;

  • Outline any cleaning processes needed during the activity: ensure that high touch points in the facility and program space, such as door knobs, light switches and washrooms, are regularly cleaned and disinfected during the program;

  • Depending on the venue, determine who will be responsible for providing sanitizers and cleaning disinfectants;

  • Provide hand sanitizer, approved for COVID-19 use, at the entrance to the venue and within program space (if handwashing station is not available);

  • If able, identify where participants can wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20-30 seconds, especially after using the washroom;

  • Ensure all shared equipment and supplies are sanitized prior to activity; a schedule for ongoing cleaning guidelines needs to be established and shared with facilitators/instructors and participants;

  • Place signage in appropriate areas so everyone is aware of the guidelines;

  • Identify one-way traffic flow within the facility and limit individuals occupying common spaces (identify separate entrances/exists to the facility if possible); identify any restrictions on numbers of people allowed in common spaces, as well as any areas that are not accessible within the venue;

  • Provide appropriate space for facilitators/instructors that is two metres (6 feet) away from other participants.  If facilitator/instructor is working more closely with participants, ensure they wear appropriate masks and other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE); and

  • Be sure to check on the cancellation policies for the venue (if applicable).  If there are health concerns, it’s best to be aware of your options for postponing or cancelling the use of the venue space.

 
  1. Connect with facilitators and instructors to ensure they understand their responsibilities
  • Ensure facilitators/instructors are aware of all safety protocols and identify all requirements in their contracts (roles, agreement to safety guidelines, cancellations/postponements);

  • Make sure facilitators/instructors have planned the program to ensure that they, and participants, wear a mask any time physical distancing of two metres (6 feet) is not possible;

  • Ensure facilitators/instructors are able to work with the traffic flow and with the allowable amount of individuals in common areas (such as entrance areas, kitchens and washrooms) required in the venue;

  • Make sure facilitators/instructors are aware of all supplies and cleaning guidelines;

  • Determine and share the process for all safety precautions required in program delivery including who will handle each aspect such as screening protocol, taking daily attendance, issuing and collecting self-assessment tool for participants at the start of the program (and each day if required); ensure participants understand these assessments are to ensure their safety and help with contact tracing, should someone in the group test positive; determine a strategy for handling any participants who answer “yes” to any of the assessment questions;

  • Request that facilitators/instructors review safety precautions at the beginning of sessions: use of PPE, importance of physical distancing of two metres (6 feet), handwashing hygiene, respiratory hygiene including coughing or sneezing into elbow, avoid touching one’s face, etc.

  • Do not plan for food or beverage, if possible – instead, promote Bring Your Own Bottle; if food or beverage is required, ensure each participant has a separate, carefully prepared bagged lunch, snack and/or drink, and cutlery; do not offer buffets or shared food.

  • Advise all involved of limitations in the distribution of gifts, swag and prizes - it is best to limit these types of actions; and

  • Provide a system for collecting any paper, including self-assessment forms and program evaluations, at the end of the session.

 
  1. Connect with registered participants
  • Ensure that all participants complete the registration process prior to the activity, which may include your personal Pre-program Agreement Form (see below);

  • Ensure all participants review and understand the various COVID-19 guidelines in place and be prepared to follow them; ensure participants understand that they must complete an assessment tool each day of the program, if necessary.

  • Understand how you will handle any participant who answers “yes” to questions on the self-assessment or is not able to attend due to illness.

  • Provide participants with a list of any materials they are required to bring.  This may include Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) such as masks, sanitizer, gloves, etc.  Or, it may include personal activity supplies such as pens, pencils, paper and any other supplies.

  • Take the opportunity to let participants know that you are taking COVID-19 safety precautions seriously in your promotion.  Let everyone know what they can expect by coming to your programs. Studies show that people are more likely to attend in-person programs when they are aware of an organization’s COVID-19 precautions and protocols.

  • Determine your ability to provide refunds or make alternate arrangements should this activity need to be cancelled or postponed. Write out your cancellation/postponement guidelines and provide to both facilitators/instructors and participants.

 

POST-ACTIVITY

Organizers need to:

  • Be aware of any responsibility to release personal information to the Province of Saskatchewan Health Authority, as required by those regulatory bodies.
  • Assist the regulatory bodies with any contact tracing that may be required.

 

Thank you for doing your part to keep everyone in this activity safe.  If you have any questions/concerns, please contact us at 306-780-9284, email – info@saskculture.ca or visit our website at saskculture.ca.

 

WHAT FACILITATORS/INSTRUCTORS NEED TO KNOW

Facilitators/instructors who work for a cultural organization or have been contracted to provide a service will normally be working on the frontlines and will be responsible for supporting participants in following safety guidelines.  Sometimes, the facilitator/instructors will be the same person as the organizer – so this may just be an extension of the organizer’s role.  However, if an organization uses multiple facilitators/instructors, it is important to ensure everyone has the same understanding.

 

KEY UNDERSTANDINGS FOR FACILITATORS/INSTRUCTORS:

  • Facilitators/Instructors must work with Organizers to help ensure that programs/services follow current provincial public health guidelines;
  • Facilitators/Instructors must coordinate activities so they can be offered in a safe, sanitized  and well-ventilated venue for all activities;
  • Facilitators/instructors must ensure that participants follow appropriate public health guidelines and precautions when on-site; and
  • Facilitators/Instructors should take the opportunity to promote all COVID-19 precautions they have taken to potential and registered participants.

PRE-ACTIVITY

Facilitators/Instructors need to:

  • Adjust activity as necessary to adhere to COVID-19 guidelines and enable appropriate instruction; a facilitator/instructor may be required to sign a liability waiver, as part of their contract if working as a third-party to the organization;
  • Prepare activity kits in advance and having them available in areas where participants will be sitting; each participant should have their own set of materials that should not be shared (i.e. manual, pen, paper, etc.)
  • Be aware of the venue layout and its responsibilities in adhering to cleaning and use of PPE;
  • Identify what the organizers will provide (masks, hand sanitizer, etc.) for the facilitator/instructor and participants and come prepared.
 

DURING ACTIVITY

Facilitators/Instructors need to:

  • Ensure individual course registration/agreement forms are completed on the first day by each participant; this waiver is used to gather contact information and confirm their agreement to COVID-19 protocols.  Once signed these forms can be placed in an envelope and returned to the Organizer;
  • Have all participants complete the daily self-assessment screening tool, if required; any participants with symptoms should NOT be allowed to participate;
  • Track daily attendance at the intervals noted on the tracking and tracing form. This information is important should contract tracing become necessary.
  • If participants do not abide by the guidelines established by the organization, they should not be allowed to continue in the program to ensure the health and safety of all other participants. The Facilitator/Instructor has the right to ask them to leave;
  • Set up activity space to accommodate 2 metres (6 feet) of space between participants and encourage one-way traffic flow around the room; limit numbers of individuals in common spaces, such as entrance ways, kitchens, washrooms, etc.; any time this is not possible, masks should be worn;
  • Limit sharing of equipment if possible; if not, ensure cleaning guidelines are developed, shared and implemented;
  • Do not bring food or beverage into program space, if possible; and ensure there is no sharing of food.  If food or beverage is necessary, ensure each participant has a separate, carefully prepared bagged lunch, snack and/or drink;
  • Frequently disinfect any high touch/shared surfaces (like doorknobs, light switches, etc.);
  • Encourage use of hand sanitizers and hand cleaning stations regularly throughout the program period;
  • Ensure any signage for the venue has been placed to help participants understand guidelines to follow;
  • Ask participants to leave any completed paper evaluations or assessments in the envelope provided.  Wash hands after touching any of this paperwork.  Envelopes will be left closed for a minimum of 48 hours following the course.
 

POST-ACTIVITY

  • If you show signs or symptoms of COVID19 following the activity, contact the HealthLine 811 or SHA who will notify you if you should be tested.  You will be contacted by SHA for followup if tests are positive.

 

Thank you for doing your part to keep everyone in this activity safe.  If you have any questions/concerns, please contact us at 306-780-9284, email – info@saskculture.ca or visit our website at saskculture.ca.

 

WHAT TO SHARE WITH PARTICIPANTS

In order to support your organization’s safety guidelines, it is important to communicate clearly with your participants.  Even in small group settings, certain guidelines are encouraged.  Also, the COVID-19 situation is evolving daily so everyone involved needs to understand that guidelines may be reviewed and updated regularly.  Organizers will want to share their commitment to participant safety and remind them that their cooperation is appreciated.

 

KEY UNDERSTANDINGS FOR PARTICIPANTS:

  • Participants must agree to follow current provincial public health guidelines, including completing a health assessment agreement prior to participating; daily assessments may be required;
  • Participants can expect to gather in a clean, sanitized atmosphere, but may be asked to supply their own Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as masks, for all activities;
  • Participants on-site agree to listen to the direction of facilitators/instructors and staff direction on use of facility, sharing of equipment, traffic flow and cleaning procedures; and
  • Participants agree to contact HealthLine 811 if they experience any symptoms following their participation in this program.

 

Different cultural programs may require different precautions and guidelines.  It is important to take the time to identify what is needed for a particular program. Organizers need to work with the guidelines above and adjust where necessary.  The following is a sample of the Pre-Program Agreement form that can be given to participants prior to their arrival or used in conjunction with a self-assessment form when they arrive.  Wording for a self-assessment form is also supplied.

 

SAMPLE PARTICIPANT AGREEMENTS/ASSESSMENTS

 

PRE-PROGRAM AGREEMENT

Thank you for registering in (Name of Program/Activity) hosted by (Name of Organization).  (Name of Organization) is committed to maintaining the safety and well-being of all involved in our programs and services.  Our current guidelines require everyone to fill out a Participant Agreement form before we begin.  A self-assessment may be required each day.  This process enables us to ensure that everyone in this program will be as safe as possible within our current environment.  Thank you for your help!

 

 

  1. Do you agree with our guidelines?

Please read and note your agreement with the following guidelines. If you do not agree, your registration will be cancelled and you will not be allowed to participate (any fees paid will be refunded).

    • I agree t follow the COVID-19 guidelines currently in effect, as issued by the Province.
    • I agree t complete the self-assessment tool, as required.
    • I agree t wear a face mask, if at any point in the activity participants are unable to maintain two metres (6 feet) distancing.
    • I agree t limit the sharing of equipment, as much as possible.
    • I agree t limit movement within the facility and abide by posted traffic and sanitizing guidelines.
    • I agree t help keep common areas clean by helping to ensure that any common spaces are sanitized between users.
    • I agree t frequent handwashing /sanitizing at available stations within the venue
    • I agree t contact HealthLine 811, or visit a drive-in testing site, if I show any symptoms.

 

  1. What will happen if you cannot attend, or we cancel or postpone

If you are not feeling well, and have any of the symptoms connected with COVID-19 virus, please stay home.  Call us at (306-xxx-xxx) to note your absence.  If you are unable to complete the program, we will refund any outstanding registration fees associated with your participation.

 

(Organization’s name) reserves the right to cancel an event/workshop/activity if the wellbeing of participants is in jeopardy.  If this should happen, we will reschedule the program on a new date, or provide a full refund of registration fees.  If the rescheduling of the program does not work for a participant, the registration fee will be refunded.

 

Thank you for doing your part to keep everyone in this activity safe.  If you have any questions/concerns, please contact us at 306-XXX-XXX.

 

 

PARTICIPANT SELF-ASSESSMENT (completed on each and every day of program)

Thank you for registering in (Name of Program/Activity) hosted by (Name of Organization).  (Name of Organization) is committed to maintaining the safety and well-being of all involved in our programs and services.  Our current guidelines require everyone to fill out Self-Assessment form each day.  This process enables us to ensure that everyone in this program will be as safe as possible within our current environment, and ensure we are able to provide contract tracing should anyone in attendance experience COVID-19 symptoms or test positive.  Thank you for your help!

 

Do you have any symptoms?

Do you currently have…

    • Fever
    • Cugh
    • Runny nse or nasal congestion (not caused by allergies)
    • Sre throat
    • Shrtness of breath
    • Muscle aches
    • Fatigue
    • Headache
    • Difficulty swallwing
    • Changes t sense of smell or taste
    • Nausea/vmiting/diarrhea
    • Abdminal pain

 

Have you returned to Canada from outside the country (including the US) in the past 14 days? Yes/No



 

In the past 14 days:

Did you have close contact with a person who has a probable or confirmed case of COVID-19? Yes/No

 

Did you have close contact with a person with respiratory illness that started within 14 days of contact with a person who has a probably or confirmed case of COVID-19?  Yes/No

 

Did you have close contact with a person with respiratory illness who just returned from travel outside of Canada within the last 14 days? Yes/No

 

You may be asked to leave the venue and contact the local health authority by calling HealthLine 811, if you have any of these symptoms. A refund of registration fees will be issued to participants who are unable to attend as a result.

 

Signed _____________________________________________________

Contact Information __________________________________________

Date   ______________________________________________________

 

Thank you for doing your part to keep everyone in this activity safe.  If you have any questions/concerns, please contact us at 306-XXX-XXX.