Council Response to COVID-19
Supersedes guidance provided on September 22, 2020
GSUSA has provided COVID-19 safety and health guidance for councils
to share with their volunteers, recognizing that the timing of
resuming in person troop meetings and activities will vary from state
to state and even county to county in certain regions. This guidance
is intended to be used for volunteers in conjunction with Safety
Activity Checkpoints and according to each council’s individual state
and local COVID-19 circumstances which remains fluid.
This guidance is being provided as of the Edition Date above from
GSUSA (when a vaccine has not been made readily available). Girl
Scouts Heart of the South may modify this guidance, from time to time
as circumstances change. Please refer to this document from
time-to-time to determine recommendations on Girl Scout activities
around COVID-19. Given the constantly changing guidelines in the 3
states and 59 counties that GSHS serves, volunteers should frequently
visit this document to stay informed on the most recent
recommendations. Each update supersedes any previously posted information.
GSUSA strongly recommends resuming normal in-person activities only
after your state and county have successfully passed its final phase
of the re-opening process.
Volunteer Awareness. COVID-19 is an extremely contagious virus
that spreads easily in the community. Take all reasonable precautions
to limit potential exposure for girls, volunteers, and families. It
is an important time to be a great Girl Scout and demonstrate Girl
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to change as infection rates rise
and fall in different areas. There may be regional differences or
developments since this guidance was published. Continue to follow
local and national directives. Discuss plans with families.
Pre-screening and Symptoms Check. Prior to in-person troop
meetings and activities, all participants should be screened to ensure
they are healthy and that they have not experienced symptoms that are
associated with COVID-19 in the previous 72 hours, that they have not
knowingly been in contact with someone that has exhibited symptoms or
has been confirmed positive with COVID-19 and that they have not been
to high risk geographical regions; particularly those regions with a
14-day quarantine period.
Girl Scouts Heart of the South provides a COVID-19
Member Participation Waiver for troops and service units to use
Volunteers that are planning events should complete pre-screening
and symptoms check prior to each in-person gathering. If an attendee
answers a question that would indicate a likelihood or a known
possibility that they could be a carrier of the virus, they should not
be asked to attend the gathering. Please be sensitive to the fact that
girls may be experiencing symptoms that are similar but completely
unrelated to COVID-19 and not contagious at all, such as headaches,
allergies or a pre-existing condition. The goal is to keep the meeting
safe from contagion and do the very best to ensure our girls are
educated and healthy, not make it unnecessarily difficult or
uncomfortable for girls to gather safely.
Restrictions by State. Before implementing these national
guidelines, first and foremost: Check local restrictions for small
gatherings in the council home state. They could vary greatly from
state to state, county to county, or even from town to town. As of
this Edition Date state restrictions are still changing. AARP
publishes an excellent overview of restriction by state which is
updated daily: AARP
Coronavirus Restrictions by State. Check your state
Department of Health (DOH) to ensure your jurisdiction is in
compliance with statutory norms and laws.
The council’s Leadership Centers and Trefoil Trunk Shops are
currently closed to the public, but council staff remain ready to
serve members and their families.
If you need assistance there are multiple
ways to contact us:
visit our homepage and look for the
icon on the bottom right of the page
Returning to In-Person Troop Meetings and Activities Interim
COVID-19 Guidance for Volunteers
Troops and Service Units who wish to resume in-person meetings and
activities must submit an Acknowledgement
of GSHS COVID-19 Guidelines prior to in-person gatherings
Our team has also developed a COVID-19 Member Participation Waiver for any
troops who would like a little more peace of mind. This form is not
required by the council for in-person activities, but troops are
welcome to use it.
Use the following questions and reminders to help decide how and
when to return to troop activities.