Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Scouting at Home
Talking with Children about Coronavirus
Steps to Prevent Illness
Resource Links
Infographics to Share on Social Media

The safety of our Scouts, their families and adult leaders is a top priority of the Cradle of Liberty Council (COLBSA). To that end, the COLBSA staff has been and continues to monitor the coronavirus situation closely.

We are actively following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state and local health departments, and the World Health Organization (WHO) so we can respond quickly to any shifts in their recommendations. In keeping with the motto of the BSA, the council staff and volunteers are preparing contingency plans for programs and activities in the event of changing recommendations from public health authorities. Any changes will be communicated through this webpage, email newsletters, and shared on the council’s social media channels.

UPDATED JUNE 30, 2020

COL Reopening Guidelines/FAQ 06-30-2020

Unit Meetings & Activities

The Governor of Pennsylvania requests that continued telework is strongly encouraged. Therefore, we continue to recommend that units of all sizes continue to meet virtually. For units who opt to meet in-person, you will need to adhere to each of the following practices:

  1. You must have the approval from your Chartering Organization to gather in-person – since your unit is technically owned and operated by them.
  2. Develop a plan to follow PA Dept. of Health and CDC guidelines, which must be approved by your chartering organization. To help prevent the asymptomatic spread of COVID-19, follow all physical distancing and sanitizing guidelines set-forth by the PA Department of Health and the CDC, including wearing face coverings and maintaining a six foot physical separation.

PA Dept. of Health            CDC

  1. Be sure to have each participant complete this health screening questionnaire before they participate in each meeting, activity or event. Those who answer YES to any question, or have a fever above 100.0 ˚F should not be allowed to attend or participate.
  2. Prioritize outdoor meetings, and limit gatherings to the current sizes outlined by guidelines set by the local, state, or federal government, using the most-strict of the guidelines.
  3. Transportation – Encourage transportation by members of the same household, limiting carpooling where possible. Refer to CDC guidelines for updated practices.
  4. If you cannot meet these guidelines, do not meet in-person; continue virtual meetings.

Important reminder: Unit leadership and meeting hosts of in-person meetings or activities who do not adhere to all of the PA Dept. of Health and CDC regulations noted above could potentially find themselves without liability insurance coverage, making them personally liable for any injury or illness contracted as a result of that meeting or activity.

Can units participate in one-day activities and overnight camping trips at non-Cradle of Liberty Council camps?

While it is not encouraged, units can attend single-day day events and overnight camping trips if they have the permission of their chartering organization and are careful to follow all PA Dept. of Health, CDC, and Scouting guidelines. 

For recommendations of practices to help keep Scouts safe, here are a few resources that can be used:

 

In the meantime, we encourage units to utilize the exciting virtual programs offered by the Cradle of Liberty Council, including Resica Falls Virtual Camp for Scouts BSA members, Online Adventures for Cub Scouts, and the many other resources available on our website at colbsa.org/homescouting.  

Scouting at Home

Advancement & Eagle Scout Guidance

Here are answers to advancement questions arising as we deal with closures, cancellations, or other issues caused by the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) for Cub Scouting, Scouts BSA, Venturing, and Sea Scouting.

A popular question we’ve heard is about Eagle Scout Projects – Can our Life Scouts work on their Eagle Scout Service Projects?

Yes – See the Eagle Scout Project guidelines to see how to safely conduct Eagle Scout Projects under the COVID-19 safety restrictions. 

Remember: If a Scout will turn 18 prior to September 30, 2020 and can’t complete their Eagle project due to these restrictions, then they can apply for a three month extension.

As a reminder, Eagle applications and statement of life purpose should be emailed to amy.davidson@scouting.org and the Eagle workbook should be delivered to the District Advancement Eagle Board Chair.

 

Please also refer to the Reopening FAQs for more information about Eagle projects.

Cradle of Liberty Eagle Project Guidelines
National Council COVID-19 Advancement FAQ's

Resource Center (Council Office) & Scout Shop

The Valley Forge Scout Shop and Firestone Scouting Resource Center in Wayne are closed until further notice.

 

All council staff are working remotely and remain accessible to support you. If you have a time-sensitive issue, please contact your local professional or call our general number at 610-688-6900. You may need to leave a message. A contact list is available at colbsa.org/staff.

 

You may mail items to the Cradle of Liberty Council, 1485 Valley Forge Road, Wayne, PA 19087. You may also drop-off items in the bin located near the center door off the loading dock, located on the left side of the building. Eagle applications and statement of life purpose should be emailed to amy.davidson@scouting.org and the Eagle workbook should be delivered to the District Advancement Eagle Board Chair.

 

We are in communication with the National Supply Division to discuss their plans for reopening the Valley Forge Scout Shop. In the meantime, please visit scoutshop.org. If you need to purchase rank advancement items, please follow the following steps:

  1. Unit leader emails their Scoutbook advancement report to NDCSupply.Orders@scouting.org.
  2. Please include contact phone number so that the customer service team member can contact for payment information.
  3. Customer service rep. will contact unit leader for credit card information, ship to and bill to address, and verify the correct council along with the actual advancement needed.

Council & District Events

All in-person council- and district-level events are postponed or cancelled until further notice. Council and district standing and ad-hoc committees are encouraged to continue to meet virtually using audio or video conferencing.

Virtual Programming

Summer Camp

Although summer camps are not operating this summer, we know how important a Scouting summer camp program is to our Scouts. We want to help be sure that every Scout has a chance to experience Scouting this summer, and have put together two exciting programs for your Scouts to enjoy:

Resica Falls Virtual Camp – Join us Under the Big Top for a summer adventure you won’t soon forget. Scouts can earn up to 6 merit badges across the 6-week program, as well as participate in exciting camp-wide programs just like you would if you had gone to Resica this summer!

Cub Scout Online Adventures – Every Cub Scout loves adventure, and we are providing the adventure virtually this Spring and Summer! The Spring session includes weekly learning adventures hosted by our leaders Rocket and Kenny the Bear with special hosts that include scientists, first responders, nature-enthusiasts, and more! The Summer session will include the same exciting presenters but will include more hands-on activities made possible by Camp-in-a-box!

Council Camping Facilities

Based on guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, we are keeping both the Musser Scout Reservation and the Resica Falls Scout Reservation closed at this time. This includes not allowing fishing or maintenance volunteers on either property.  Plans are underway to begin allowing small work groups on both properties to begin preparing the camps to welcome guests as soon as is safely possible.  In the meantime, we encourage families to visit State Parks and participate in other outdoor programs as families to get outside. Just be sure to visit locations that have the staff, facilities and protocols in place to ensure cleanliness and safety.

Units with reservations during this closure will receive a non-refundable credit that can be transferred to another reservation scheduled later in 2020 at any of the council camps.

If you have any questions regarding short-term camping reservations, please reach out to our camping team at camping@colbsa.org.

Order of the Arrow – Unami Lodge, One

Please visit unamilodge.org/coronavirus for the latest updates.

Steps to Prevent Illness

Click here for a list from the CDC of symptoms that defines a person as ill.

 

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, 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.

 

If you have a fever, cough, or other symptoms associated with COVID-19, or if you believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19, you should isolate and not attend any Scouting events. People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.

 

Click here for steps from the CDC to prevent illness and what to do if you’re sick.

 

Click here for mental health and coping resources.

 

Please monitor this website for up-to-date information and guidance as recommendations may change to follow recommended practices. The Cradle of Liberty Council is here to support you and your Scouting programs. Thank you for continuing to run safe programs that promote positive health habits.