SO Nanaimo: SOBC May 7 COVID-19 Update

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SOBC return to sport update as of May 7

Special Olympics BC welcomes the Government of B.C.’s May 6 announcement about their plan to restart B.C. safely. We’d like to share what the next steps look like for SOBC. We are currently developing plans to safely reactivate each of our sports and all of our programs and activities. Provincial officials will need to approve the plan for each sport and program before we are permitted to restart anything. SOBC’s Sport team is busy building these plans, and we are working with the sport-specific Provincial Sport Organizations who are generously sharing their own plans.

Because some sports have less physical closeness and contact than others, those sports may be able to start again sooner than others. But we don’t yet have any dates to confirm. We are working through the plans now, with fellow PSOs and provincial officials, to make sure everything will proceed safely.

We look forward to keeping everyone up to date as we learn more. We can’t wait to get back to Special Olympics sports and programs again. But we will put everyone’s safety first, and proceed in accordance with provincial officials. For now, all Special Olympics BC programs and face-to-face activities remain paused. Throughout the coming phases of the restart plan, we all must remember to keep focusing on personal hygiene, including hand washing, physical distancing, and staying at home if you are sick.

“Today, we’ve unveiled our plan for a slow and safe restart. We need to be vigilant, to make sure we keep flattening the curve of transmission,” Premier John Horgan said. “There is much more to do. But we will get through this pandemic to better days by working together and keeping each other safe.” For more information about the Government of B.C.’s Restart Plan, please visit: www.gov.bc.ca/restartbc.

Special Olympics BC is continuing the weekly spring at-home training and activity challenges, and we’re creating new resources to remotely support athletes and coaches as well as new virtual fundraisers. Please check out the SOBC website for tools to stay active, connected, positive, and informed, and stay tuned to our website and social media channels for ongoing updates.

Excerpted message from Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry:

Our “new normal” is based on principles that apply to every person and every situation. These principles are the foundation of how we need to move forward with our B.C. plan, and will remain in place for the weeks and months ahead.

These principles include:
1. Staying informed, being prepared and following public health advice;
2. Practising good hygiene – hand hygiene, avoid touching your face and respiratory etiquette;
3. Staying at home and away from others if you are feeling ill – with no exceptions – whether for school, work or socializing;
4. Maintaining physical distancing outside the household, e.g., no handshakes or hugs, keeping your number of contacts low and keeping a safe distance;
5. Making necessary contacts safer with appropriate controls, e.g., using plexiglass barriers or redesigning spaces;
6. Increasing cleaning of frequently touched surfaces at home and work;
7. Considering the use of non-medical masks in situations where physical distancing cannot be maintained, such as on transit or while shopping; and
8. Continuing to minimize non-essential personal travel.

I have seen the strength and resilience in British Columbians that I know will hold us in good stead in the months ahead. We must continue to keep our firewall strong and remain committed to our efforts to protect our province.

Be kind, be calm, be safe.

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