News and events Coronavirus (Covid-19) Archived Information and Guidance All archived information and guidance from Boccia England is available to view below. Latest Boccia England Statement 3rd November 2020 3 November 2020 The announcement of new national restrictions to limit the spread of Covid-19 will mean that boccia club, community, academy and EPG activity must cease during this time. The England-wide restrictions come into effect on Thursday 5 November and will last until at least 2 December. More information can be found on the government’s website. Our Back to Boccia web area will be unavailable during this time. There are some exemptions where boccia may be able to continue in some settings. Please refer to the Sport England and Government guidance at the links below for further details: Sport England guidance. Government guidance. While it will be a challenging few weeks, Boccia England will continue to do all it can to support our players, members and volunteers to stay active and engage through #BocciaAtHome. We will continue to follow the government guidelines and provide you with information on how this impacts boccia activity when anything changes in December. In the meantime, we hope you stay safe and can join us in some of our activities – don’t miss the following opportunities coming up, amongst others! Tuesday tea break – join us for a coffee and a catch up on Zoom at 11am every Tuesday morning! Round four of the Rainbow Cup, our virtual at home competition Attend one of our free online workshops to develop your boccia knowledge – click here for more information. As schools remain open for now find out how you can get involved in Virtually Boccia Celebrate the people who make boccia and join us for the Boccia England Awards on 5 December! Join in with our social media selection of games, quizzes and tips such as; Saturday Kahoot quizzes, Friday Funday puzzles and brain teasers, and Selfcare Sunday. Boccia England Latest Statement 15th October 2020 In response to the latest government announcement this week introducing the three alert level tiers, we have updated our return to training guidance. These changes has implications for those in high or very high alert level areas in relation to who you can be on court with, so please take the time to digest the guidance. While our guidance allows for the return of club sessions where this is possible, we appreciate the current picture of rising cases is concerning and want to reiterate that a return to our sport should only be done when you are ready. We continue to monitor the situation closely and will react accordingly. Please get in touch if you have any questions planning your return and stay safe. Boccia England Latest Covid-19 Statement - 23rd September Following the latest government coronavirus briefing on 22nd September 2020, Boccia England can highlight the government update that applies to providers of grassroots sport in section 10 of the following guidance https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/providers-of-grassroots-sport-and-gym-leisure-facilities As a reminder our current guidance still applies to clubs and sessions which can be found via https://www.bocciaengland.org.uk/Pages/Category/backtoboccia Although there is no specific impact to Boccia England’s current Back to Boccia training guidance, we have updated the guidance to highlight the importance of six people maximum per court, and a request to stay in the same group of six for the duration of the session. We have also created a return to training guidance infographic. It is important to stress that everyone in our boccia community has a vital role to play in ensuring a safe return to sport and we must all remember that the safety and well-being of our players, volunteers and staff is our priority. No one should go back to playing boccia if they are not comfortable or if they cannot meet these guidelines. To access the updated guidance please CLICK HERE. To access the updated FAQS please CLICK HERE. To download a copy of our Back to Boccia training guidance infographic, CLICK HERE. Back to Boccia - Boccia England Statement 15th September Boccia England has now published guidelines for the return to boccia training. It is important to note that these guidelines do not include a return to match play and competitions at this stage. The safety and wellbeing of the boccia community remains our top priority and these guidelines are our first step to a return to our sport. The guidelines have been produced in line with government guidance and has received approval from our insurers. While social gatherings of more than six people have been banned in England since 14th September, the government has confirmed that organised sports and activities that have been through return to play protocols can take place. People can continue to use leisure facilities, but people should not go to these venues socially in groups of more than six. That is because these sports and activities have stringent plans in place to reduce the risk of Covid-19, and because these venues are classed as Covid-19 secure given the measures they have introduced. Whilst we are pleased that there is the guidance in place to now to support a return to our sport, the choice to return to boccia needs to be made locally by clubs, considering their own circumstances. It is important to stress that no individual should be made to feel under any pressure to return until they feel comfortable to do so. With advice likely to evolve as restrictions change, we will monitor and update our guidance to ensure it is in line with the what the government is advising. Please stay up to date through our website and social media channels. Download the Back to Boccia guidelines and a list of FAQs to help answer questions you may have. The FAQs will continue to be added to over the coming weeks. Our Back to Boccia support web area is where you will find other information to support your return. Thank you for your support and patience as we have put this guidance together and as we continue to monitor the situation and consider the next stages. Preparing for a safe return As restrictions start to lift and indoor facilities start to reopen, Boccia England is working to prepare guidelines to support the safe and gradual return of boccia. For now, there is no change to our current position in England, with boccia activity outside the home, on hold. Please download the infographic on our current position below. Click here to download a PDF version. The safety of the boccia community continues to be our priority. We know that when boccia activity restrictions are gradually lifted, the timing of that safe return to the sport will be different for many people as the effects of coronavirus will be felt for a considerable time. It will be important that you do not feel pressure to return until you feel safe to do so. In the meantime, please continue to engage with us through our social media activity, the Rainbow Cup (link), and our volunteer quizzes. There is also support and advice available from Mind and the NHS to support your wellbeing that may be useful during this time: https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus/coronavirus-and-your-wellbeing/ https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/coronavirus-covid-19-staying-at-home-tips/ Thank you for your support and understanding as we work to get people enjoying boccia safely in the future. The next steps will be communicated on our website so please keep up to date with the latest information at https://www.bocciaengland.org.uk/Listing/Category/coronavirus-covid-19 Boccia England position as of 29th June 2020 Following these latest guidelines and the ongoing restrictions that impact our players and volunteers, there will no boccia until further notice. The safe return to our sport is very much dependant on a number of key factors where we must ensure that we are able to provide a safe environment for our players and volunteers. Advice to Individuals The most important thing to remember is that you need to stay a safe distance away from anyone you do not live with (or anyone not in your support bubble) when outside your home. It is also important that you ensure you wash your hands using soap and water or hand sanitiser regularly throughout the day. If possible, cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing with disposable tissues and dispose of them in the nearest waste bin after use. If you have no tissues to hand, you should cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow. Wash your hands with soap and water afterwards. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/social-distancing/what-you-need-to-do/ Shielding The government has updated its guidance for people who are shielding considering that COVID-19 disease levels have decreased over the last few weeks. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19 There are a series of steps for relaxing shielding guidance to be introduced from 6 July, and from 1 August the government will be advising that shielding will be paused. From this date, the government is advising you to adopt strict social distancing rather than full shielding measures. Strict social distancing means you may wish to go out to more places and see more people but you should take particular care to minimise contact with others outside your household or support bubble. In practice, this means that from 1 August: People who are shielding remain vulnerable and should continue to take precautions but can now leave their home if they wish if they are able to maintain strict social distancing. If you choose to spend time outdoors, this can be with members of your own household. If you live alone, you can spend time outdoors with one person from another household. Ideally, this should be the same person each time. If you do go out, you should take extra care to minimise contact with others by keeping 2 metres apart. This guidance will be kept under regular review. Carers & Assistants For those of you who work with carers and/or assistants, there may already be guidelines in place for your carer to work safely in your home. For those who work with unpaid carers, the Government has provided the following guidance which may be useful. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-providing-unpaid-care/guidance-for-those-who-provide-unpaid-care-to-friends-or-family Carers should be using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and face coverings where possible, and guidance on this has been provided by Public Health England. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/882069/Putting_on_PPE_home_carer.pdf Coronavirus Update 24th June 2020 Latest Government Update On 23 June 2020, the Prime Minister announced further easements of the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions as part of Step Three of the government’s plan to return life to as near normal as we can. However indoor fitness and dance studios, and indoor gyms and sports venues remain closed in law until further notice. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/opening-certain-businesses-and-venues-in-england-from-4-july-2020 Guidance on club/group activities due to Coronavirus COVID-19 UK Government advice: Based upon the current scientific advice from the Government’s medical experts, the recommendation is to carry out social distancing measures to reduce social interaction between people in order to reduce the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19). We recommend all clubs to heed this advice and suspend activity until further notice. Boccia England position as of 11th May 2020 On 10 May, the government confirmed changes to what's allowed in relation to sport and physical activity as part of the next phase of its response to the Covid-19 outbreak which means that some sports activities were able to restart from Wednesday 13 May. We understand that this guidance relates to outdoor sports only that can safely operate under the guidelines, including with relevant social distancing. As far as boccia is concerned, it is important to remind everyone in the boccia community that Boccia England’s position remains the same in that all our current club activities, competitions and courses remain suspended until further notice. This also includes any activities taking place through any of our affiliated clubs or by our members. Our guidance is available at https://www.bocciaengland.org.uk/coronavirus. Any changes to the guidance will also be published at this location. We appreciate that this situation has been difficult for our members and clubs and we continue to stress the importance of continuing to respect the conditions that have been set out to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our members is paramount. We will continue to plan for our return to boccia through the provision of clear guidelines to our members, and our clubs so there is a clear understanding in what conditions need to be in place before we can return. To assist with planning for a return to our sport, we will establish a working group to look at setting out any guidance that may be required so that operational decisions can be made. This work will focus on providing guidance on a safe and enjoyable return to boccia. Boccia England position as of 18th March 2020 In light of the rapidly changing situation involving Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the expectation that stricter measures could/will be introduced in the coming weeks, Boccia England has made the difficult decision to cancel the remainder of the 2019/20 Competition season and to suspend boccia activity across the country at all levels of the game at this time. This means we have suspended competitions, courses, events, programmes and training sessions for the time being until further notice. We have also made arrangements for all our staff to be able to work from home and during this transition we ask for your patience in terms of responding to enquiries. We will continue to be fully operational with arrangements in place to deal with telephone enquires as well as post. It is important to stress that the health and safety of our members is our main priority and to avoid the spread of Coronavirus we will be continuing to follow the government’s advice, which is to move away from mass gatherings and for the public to avoid any unnecessary contact where possible over the coming weeks. We also strongly encourage those with underlying health conditions to continue to follow the guidance in terms of social isolation to minimise the risk of becoming ill. We will shortly be publishing a ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ document which should answer any queries you may have. However, please email [email protected] if you have any other queries relating to the Coronavirus and Boccia England. Given the positive impact, boccia has on many people’s lives and the importance of keeping active at this time, we will be considering different approaches to encourage people to be active through boccia using digital and virtual resources over the coming days and weeks. Please keep following the government and public health advice here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public and we look forward to welcoming you to Boccia England competitions next season.