Boys and Girls Club gets ready for a socially distanced summer
The Wareham Boys and Girls Club has been closed since mid-March, but staff are now getting ready to reopen for summer programs, which are tentatively scheduled to start on July 6.
According to Rob Mendes, the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater New Bedford/Wareham, “our number one priority is the safety of our members and staff,” so there will be several precautions in place to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
Mendes said that the biggest difference this summer, is that the club will not be able to go on field trips, due to CDC guidelines prohibiting bus trips for the children.
Nakita Besegai, the Wareham Unit Interim Director said that many of the indoor programs will continue this summer, but some changes have been made to ensure safety.
Children will be separated into groups of ten, and will rotate through a series of activities, spread out across the Wareham facility. Stations and equipment will be cleaned regularly, and kids must wash their hands before moving onto the next station.
Children will stay with the same group to limit the amount of contact they have with others.
Besegai added that a new full-time cleaner has been hired to ensure sanitary conditions this summer.
Parents and guardians will only be allowed into the front lobby of the building to make cash payments, or in the case of an emergency.
Social distancing will be prioritized throughout the program, and face masks are strongly encouraged for the children.
The exact program has not been finalized yet, but Besegai said that activities that can better accommodate these new guidelines will be prioritized.
In the media room, Besegai said that the Nintendo Wii is a good option because kids can space out from each other, and the remotes can be cleaned after each use.
Outdoor activities that involve physical contact are likely to be avoided. This means that backyard classics like “tag” may have to be off limits this summer.
As the club gets ready to open its doors to members this summer, Besegai said that she and other staff are “all excited to see the kids. It’s been a really long time.”
For more information on the Wareham Boys and Girls Club, go to: http://www.bgcnewbedford.org/wareham-unit1, or call 774-678-4243.