COVID-19: Working Together to Keep Our Girl Scout Community Healthy
side menu icon

COVID-19: Working Together to Keep Our Girl Scout Community Healthy


Blog_2020_COVID-19

The health and wellbeing of our girls, volunteers, and staff are Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska’s top priorities, and we are monitoring and assessing the latest developments of COVID-19 (coronavirus) across the state. We encourage you to check back here frequently for updates.

THE LATEST NEWS

August 3  Update

Program Cancellations and Changes:

As we continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation in Nebraska, several changes are being made to council-sponsored programs.

September Cancellations:

  • 2020 Fall Apple Festival, September 11, Camp Catron, Nebraska City
  • 2020 Fall Apple Festival, September 12, Camp Catron, Nebraska City
  • Girl Scout Traditional Camping Weekend (Grades 2-3), September 18, Camp Maha
  • Girl Scout Traditional Camping Weekend (Grades 4-5), September 18, Camp Maha    
  • Girl Scout Traditional Camping Weekend (Grades 6-12), September 18, Camp Maha

September Program Modifications:

July 31 Update

Closures:

All Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska Service Centers and Juliette’s Boutiques will remain closed through August to ensure the health and safety of our members, volunteers, and staff.

As children return to school, we will closely monitor the coronavirus situation as we consider plans for September.

Member Support continues to be available at 800.695.6690 or by email. If you need something from Juliette’s Boutique, please email us. A retail team member will connect with you and ship your order or arrange curbside pickup. Remember that our online store is always open.

July 24 Update

Girl Scouts at Home Changes:

As girls prepare to return to school, we are adjusting our Girl Scouts at Home programming. The weekday Facebook Live events at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. will end on July 31. We will continue to offer V.I.P. (Virtual Interactive POWER) Programs, and we encourage you to enjoy the Girl Scouts of the USA at Home activities! 

We are resuming limited in-person council programs in August. We have carefully planned a few programs that we feel confident we can deliver in ways that will keep everyone safe. Find the guidelines and registration information in our blog. The first phase of in-person programs include:

  • Girl Scout Traditions Picnics
  • Back to Camp We Go!
  • For the Love of Horses
  • Starlite Drive-In Family Night

Also beginning in August, our Virtual Troop Meetings for new members will be held on the first and third weeks of each month. Junior Troop meetings will be at 7 p.m. Mondays, and Daisy/Brownie meetings at 7 p.m. Tuesdays.

Virtual Open Houses for parents will be held at 7 p.m. on the first and third Thursdays of each month.

July 7 Update

Program Changes:

As we continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation in Nebraska, several changes are being made to council-sponsored programs.

August Cancellations:
•  The Great Obstacle Course Race, August 1, Samani Acreage, Lincoln
•  I Love Horses, August 7, Lakeview Cabin, North Platte
•  Save the Fantastic Beasts Camp, August 13, North Platte
•  End of Summer Camp, August 14, Camp Cosmo, Grand Island
•  Nebraska BioBlitz, August 15, Schramm Education Center, Gretna
•  Detective Academy, August 15, Lincoln Children’s Museum, Lincoln
•  Girl Genius, August 15, Lincoln Children’s Museum, Lincoln
•  Zombie Apocalypse Overnight, August 21, Camp Pawnee, Columbus
•  Come to Your Senses, August 29, Lincoln Children’s Museum, Lincoln
•  Fun with Flags, August 29, Camp Maha, Papillion

August Programs Still Scheduled:
For the Love of Horses, August 4, 5 p.m. CT, H&H Lessons and Horseback Riding, Bellwood. 

For the Love of Horses, August 4, 6 p.m. CT, H&H Lessons and Horseback Riding, Bellwood. 

The Annual Starlite Drive-In Overnite will be held August 14 starting at 8 p.m. CT but will no longer be an overnight program and has changed to a family event. Families can enjoy a double feature at the drive-in theater in Neligh.

Trip Postponed:
The Choose Your Adventure 2020 trip will move to 2021. The new dates will be October 14-17, 2021, with a registration deadline of October 1, 2021. 

FREE SHIPPING:

Girl Scouts of the USA is providing you the opportunity to shop safely from the comfort of your home with free standard shipping on all online orders, no minimum through September 30.

CLOSURES:
 

All Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska Service Centers and Juliette’s Boutiques will remain closed through July to ensure the health and safety of our members, volunteers, and staff.

Member Support continues to be available at 800.695.6690 or by email. If you need something from Juliette’s Boutique, please email us. A retail team member will connect with you and ship your order. Remember that our online store is always open. Curbside pick up also is available.

Our staff continues to work on a re-opening plan. More information will be shared as the plan is developed.

Camp Amenity Closings:

The following offerings at our camp properties are closed through August 31.

Camp Catron
•    High Ropes Course
•    Low Ropes Course
•    Swimming Pool
•    Archery
•    Platform Tents – Sherwood Forrest
•    Indian Village camping

Camp Maha
•    High Ropes Course
•    Low Ropes Course
•    Swimming Pool
•    Archery
•    Pawnee Pass Camping (including the shower house)

Camp Crossed Arrows
•    Low Ropes Course
•    Archery

Camp Cosmo
•    High Ropes Course
•    Low Ropes Course
•    Archery
•    Platform Tents (Cedar Grove, Paradise Cove, Sherwood Forest)

To learn about renting our camp properties and facilities, visit the Camp section of our website.

Troop Activities:
We strongly recommend that Girl Scout troops do NOT hold in-person meetings. Troops who do meet or participate in activities, MUST follow state- and community-directed health measures.

PREVIOUS CANCELLATIONS:

Our annual Alum Retreat scheduled for August 8. While we are sad that our Alums won’t be able to join us at Camp Catron, we are excited to announce a fun way to keep in touch until next year! The “GSSN Alum Pen Pal Program” will pair Alums for a fun way to share stories and SWAPS with someone new. Join our Girl Scouts Alum Association Facebook group to get the details.

Summer Camps: At Girl Scouts, we know how much girls look forward to camp and the essential skills they gain from their outdoor adventures. Our camp programs are a fundamental part of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

Therefore, it is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we announce the cancellation of all June summer camps and the June session of My Summer Place in Omaha.

Because the very essence of camp is incompatible with social distancing, we cannot ensure camper and staff health and safety while providing the camp experience that girls know and love during the early summer. It’s a heartbreaking decision for girls and staff alike, but we believe this is the right decision to protect our Girl Scout community.

Although there is no substitute for in-person camp experiences, we continue to offer online programs and are developing virtual camp programs, including a 2020 Camporee at Home on May 29-30.  

We will continue to assess the prospect of providing camps later in the summer and the possibility of rearranging camp program and dates. Please check this page frequently for further summer camp updates and/or date changes.

A Special Message:
We know many of you were holding out hope for summer camps. We know that cancelling camps changes your summer dramatically and that you are terribly disappointed. Our Camp Program Director Bea is also heartbroken, and she has a special video message just for you.

 

 

Cookie Dough Deadline Extended:

Cookie Dough from 2019 was set to expire on March 31. In light of the Juliette Boutique closures, we will extend the expiration date indefinitely. When we determine the final use date, we will provide no less than 30 days’ notice. Remember that Cookie Dough can also be used to register for programs and camp. Contact Member Support at 800.695.6690 to apply Cookie Dough to registrations.

Changes in Passport Reward Requirements:

The Our Earth, Our Future passports encourage girls and co-leaders to explore all Girl Scouts has to offer and earn rewards along the way. The program cancellations due to COVID-19 will impact members’ ability to earn stamps and redeem them for prizes, so we are making some modifications. 

Girls may substitute any of our Girl Scouts at Home virtual programs or Programs on Demands for any of the requirements. If you participate in a Girl Scouts at Home program, just write the name of the program on your passport. If you order a Program on Demand (or several of them), you will get a passport sticker for each. 

Co-Leaders may substitute holding a Virtual Troop Meeting for any one stamp, just write the date of your troop meeting on your passport. And we are reducing the number of stamps needed to earn the co-leader reward from nine to eight.

You can also catch up on stamps once social distancing ends and you are able to attend programs and meetings in person again!

Extended Deadlines:

We are extending the deadline to September 30 for completing and submitting final reports for girls working on their Bronze and Silver Awards. This will allow girls time to complete Take Action projects that may be affected by coronavirus restrictions.

In addition, Girl Scouts of the USA is further extending the deadline to December 31, 2020, for girls who are bridging. The December 31 deadline includes girls working on Gold Award projects who are bridging from Ambassador to adult and who already have their projects approved.

Media Contact:

It goes without saying that we’re in a complex and challenging time. As we’ve done for more than a century, we’ll get through it together and emerge stronger as a result. Now more than ever, we need to speak as one Movement!

If a member of the media contacts you about Girl Scouts and COVID-19, please reach out to us for support. We can provide media training for you and your girls and assist with strong messaging that emphasizes the Girl Scout mission.

Preventative Measures

We recommend that members regularly visit the Centers for Disease Control website for updated information and preventative measures when out in public.

Remember that the best protection is self-protection and self-monitoring. Health officials recommend the following measures to minimize your risk of contracting any virus:

  • Wash hands frequently especially after sneezing, shaking hands/bodily contact with another individual, and before eating. Use soap and water for 20 seconds or using alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching the 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 the nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing then throw the tissue in the trash, or as a last resort cough into the elbow
  • Stay home when you are not feeling well.
  • Get plenty of sleep, good nutrition, stress-relief, and exercise – a healthy body is the best defense against illness.

Be a Source of Comfort and Calm for Girls

Girl Scouts of the USA has developed a helpful resource for How to Talk to Your Girl About Coronavirus to help minimize stress and worry in your Girl Scout’s life and give her a sense of calm and control.

Thank you for your help in keeping Girl Scouts a safe space for everyone! If you have questions about how COVID-19 may impact Girl Scout activities, please contact Member Support by email or at 800.695.6690 – we're here for you.