Post-COVID Planning for In-Person Cultural Programs/Activities

(Updated March 2022)

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. There are three sections:

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

WHAT ORGANIZERS NEED TO KNOW

As organizers and leaders in the cultural community, it is important to ensure that our cultural activities/programs/services are delivered in the safest manner possible, in accordance with current Saskatchewan public health orders. Even if the public health restrictions remain lifted, it is important that we all demonstrate how programming can effectively and positively continue with a few adaptations and contingencies. 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 identified follow current provincial public health guidelines;
  • Organizers must provide a safe venues for all activities;
  • Organizers must ensure that facilitators/instructors and staff are aware of current public health orders and are able to adapt activities accordingly; and
  • Even if restrictions are listed, organizers should take the opportunity to ensure participants/audiences are aware of precautions taken and that their health is given consideration.

PRE-ACTIVITY

  1. Organize activities that are able to adapt to changing protocols.
  • There is currently no restriction on gathering sizes, no provincial vaccine mandate, and no mandated spacing or mask use. However participants and audiences may still expect to see some acknowledgement that safety is still a concern.
  • Individual businesses can make their own decisions on protecting public health. If mask use or vaccine verification is still required, ensure that these requirements are actively promoted.
  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. Organizers can continue to  provide at least two metres (6 feet) social separation, if desired; and if distancing cannot be maintained during the program, organizers can recommend that 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 activity space, 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 a hand-washing station is not available);
  • If possible, identify where participants can wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20-30 seconds (especially after using the washroom);
  • Ensure any shared equipment and supplies are sanitized prior to activity; a schedule for ongoing cleaning guidelines can be established and shared with facilitators/instructors and participants;
  • Place signage in appropriate areas so everyone is made aware of the guidelines;
  • Provide appropriate space for facilitators/instructors to operate apart from other participants. If facilitator/instructor is working more closely with participants, ensure they wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), if required; 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);
  • Organizers can determine whether facilitators/instructors need to plan the program to ensure that masks and/or social distancing is required;
  • 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 and who will handle each aspect including any screening protocols and taking daily attendance, for example;
  • Request that facilitators/instructors review safety precautions at the beginning of sessions. This may include: use of PPE, importance of physical distancing of two metres (6 feet), handwashing hygiene, respiratory hygiene including coughing or sneezing into elbow, and not touching one’s face.
  • Do not plan for food or beverage, if possible – 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; and
  • Advise all involved of limitations in the distribution of gifts, swag and prizes - it is best to limit these types of actions.
  1. Connect with registered participants
  • Ensure that all participants complete the registration process prior to the activity, which may include a personal Pre-program Agreement Form (see below);
  • Encourage all participants to review and understand the various guidelines in place and be prepared to follow them; ensure participants understand that they must complete an assessment, 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 safety precautions seriously in your promotion. Let everyone know what they can expect when 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 all facilitators/instructors and participants.

POST-ACTIVITY

Organizers might want to:

  • Survey participants/audience as to their satisfaction with the safety precautions taken.

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 facilitators/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 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 any safety precautions in place to potential and registered participants.

PRE-ACTIVITY

Facilitators/Instructors need to:

  • Adjust activity as necessary to adhere to existing safety precautions;
  • Prepare activity kits in advance and have them available in areas where participants will be sitting; consider giving each participant their own set of materials rather than sharing, if possible (ex. manual, pen, paper, etc.)
  • Be aware of the venue layout and its responsibilities in adhering to cleaning and use of masks;
  • 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:

  • Have all participants complete a self-assessment, if required; ensure participants understand that if they have symptoms they should not be participating;
  • If participants do not abide by the guidelines established by the organization, they shall not be allowed to continue in the program. The Facilitator/Instructor has the right to ask them to leave;
  • Limit sharing of equipment if possible; if not, ensure cleaning guidelines are developed and shared;
  • Frequently disinfect and sanitize any high touch/shared surfaces (such as doorknobs, light switches, etc.);
  • Encourage use of hand sanitizers and hand cleaning stations regularly throughout the program period; and
  • Ensure any signage for the venue has been placed to help participants understand guidelines to follow.

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 a small group setting, participants may feel uncertain about the current expectations.   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 public health guidelines, if required;
  • Participants can expect to gather in a clean, sanitized atmosphere, but may choose to use their own Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as masks, for all activities; and
  • Participants agree to listen to the direction of facilitators/instructors and staff direction on use of facility, and any precautions put in place.

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 accordingly.

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 may be cancelled and you will not be allowed to participate (any fees paid will be refunded).

    • I agree to follow the public health guidelines currently in effect at this business;
    • I agree to complete any self-assessment tools, as required.
    • I agree to wear a face mask, if at any point in the activity participants are unable to maintain two metres (6 feet) distancing.
    • I agree to limit sharing of equipment as much as possible.
    • I agree to frequent handwashing /sanitizing at available stations within the venue
  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 (see below), 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 well-being 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 first day and each 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 symptoms or test positive. Thank you for your help!

Do you have any symptoms?

Do you current have…

    • Fever
    • Cough
    • Runny nose or nasal congestion (not caused by allergies)
    • Sore throat
    • Shortness of breath
    • Muscle aches
    • Fatigue
    • Headache
    • Difficulty swallowing
    • Changes to sense of smell or taste
    • Nausea/vomiting/diarrhea
    • Abdominal Pain

Have you returned to Canada from outside 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 probable 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.