These are unprecedented times. There are no clear and easy answers to the many questions concerning COVID-19. We want you to know that Girl Scouts of Central Maryland has been monitoring the impact of the virus closely for the past several weeks to inform our way of work.
We assure you that the health and safety of our members and their families is a top priority. We are monitoring care and safety protocols that are issued by government health departments in this evolving situation so that we are in line with those protocols. Staff members have personally been in contact with health officials, been in consultation with our national organization, received guidance from GSUSA and continue to monitor the evolution of the status of the virus.
We are taking additional precautions in our office to ensure that our building and our staff are safe by: ensuring the level of cleanliness in our building is appropriate and adding resources like hand sanitizer and anti-bacterial spray for employees and visitors to the council. It is very important for employees, volunteers and program providers to stay home and not interact with our girls if they are not feeling well. These decisions are informed by guidance from the CDC, Governor Hogan and the Maryland Department of Health. In addition, Health officials recommend the following self-care measures to minimize the risk of contracting any virus:
- Wash your hands frequently especially after sneezing, shaking hands/bodily contact with another individual, and before eating or after using the restroom.
- Use soap and water for 20 seconds or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick - health officials call this “social distancing” and recommend staying about three feet away from someone who is sick
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, like your phone or computer.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze then throw the tissue in the trash, or as a last resort, cough into your elbow.
- Use your knuckles to press buttons like elevators instead of your fingers.
- Replace the traditional handshake with an alternative method of greeting such as a wave, etc.
To assist you with some basic dos and don’ts when it comes to handling this subject with care, please consider reading this blog article (en Español) from GSUSA which is designed to assist you as you navigate how to talk with your girls about COVID-19.
As we make day-to-day decisions we will continue to follow the lead of federal, state and local government officials. We will also follow their lead as we evaluate the status of each program on a weekly basis.
We apologize for any inconvenience and disappointment that may arise as the status of programs and events are reviewed, but please know that we are working diligently to balance health and safety concerns with the benefits that our girls derive from programs. Thank you for all that you are doing to ensure that you and our girls are safe and healthy.