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COVID-19: Boys and Girls Club of Kingston & Area Program & Facility Update

Published March 13, 2020 19:24

Boys and Girls Club of Kingston and Area has been paying close attention to the global outbreak of coronavirus COVID-19. Although the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) and KFL&A Public Health have determined the public health risk is low, we want to ensure we are being responsible and responding appropriately. The well-being of the children, youth, and families we serve, as well as staff and volunteers at our Club locations is our top priority—we are monitoring the situation closely and we will be taking every precaution to protect the communities we serve.

In light of recent events, Club Directors and Management have made the following decisions:

  • We will be operating our March Break Camp (March 16-20, 2020) at all locations as scheduled and planned.
  • Boys and Girls Club and Big Brothers Big Sisters will follow the Ministry of Education Ministerial Order sent out to schools and will suspend after school, evening and PA Day programs from March 23-April 5, 2020 inclusive. The Club has made the decision to extend this closure to Early ON programs and BBBS Big Bunch programs.
  • The West End Facility, the East End Facility and the Robert Meek Community Youth Center will remain open for regular tenant users, rentals and birthday parties.
  • We understand things may change, and we will adapt when KFL&A Public Health or City of Kingston provide more direction.

There are several operational issues to take into consideration and we will share more information as soon as we can but the Club will:

  • Continue deep cleaning of sites and focusing on having common shared surfaces more frequently disinfected.
  • Increasing number of hand sanitizing stations
  • Increasing stock levels of hand sanitizer.
  • Frequent and regular contact with KFL&A Public Health.
  • Distributing posters messaging proper hand-washing.

Recommended Infection Prevention:

  • Wash hands with soap and water for at least 15 seconds. If soap and water is not available, use a hand sanitizer (gel or wipes) with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Cough and sneeze into the bend of your arm or a tissue - not into your hand.
  • Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Keep in mind that viruses can live for 24 to 48 hours on hard surfaces such as countertops, door handles, computer keyboards and phones.
  • Do not share personal items that come into contact with saliva such as toothbrushes, eating utensils, drinks, water bottles and towels.
  • Employees on personal vacations that travel to any region that has a travel notice related to COVID-19 will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days upon their return. All employees have been asked to contact their family doctor or local public health agency if they believe they have been exposed to COVID-19.

Use of Masks:

Masks are not recommended to be worn generally if you are not sick. The Canadian Chief Medical Officer has stated that “wearing masks when you are well is not an effective measure. Sometimes it can actually present some risks as you are putting your fingers up and down on your face, removing your mask, putting them next to your eyes.” Obviously, certain professions may require the use of masks.

If You Get Sick:

KFL&A Public Health recommends if you are feeling ill, call your healthcare provider in advance to let them know of your symptoms and any recent travel to COVID-19 affected areas. After hours, or if you do not have a health care provider, call Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.

Do not go to your health care provider or a walk-in clinic without calling ahead.

We recognize the significant impact this decision will have on families, students, schools and school communities, as well as the broader community, but this precaution is necessary in order to ensure that we keep all community members safe. Additional recommendations and resources are available at www.kflaph.ca.

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