How can we keep our Fun Palace safe during COVID-19?
Things have changed a lot since the beginning of the pandemic, but it is still worth checking current guidelines and risk levels locally and check again before your event, as things change quickly. The latest guidelines for the UK:
Although restrictions are being relaxed across the UK, and vaccinations have changed the course of the pandemic, if you are at high risk, you can still make or take part in Fun Palaces from home. If you are not at high risk yourself, think about ways for people who are shielding or taking more precautions when it comes to COVID, to connect to your Fun Palace. We have some ideas here: The Shielders’ Guide to Making a Fun Palace.
Although in person, indoor gatherings are now taking place, it may still be worth considering how you can make those exercising more caution around COVID-19 feel welcome and safe at your Fun Palace. Outdoors is safer than indoors – perhaps some (or all) elements of your Fun Palace could take place outside. Further apart is safer than heads and faces being close, can you ensure that spaces don’t get too overcrowded? A tiny Fun Palace is still an option and still a valid Fun Palace.
Other precautions you may want to take to help people feel more comfortable:
- Mark spaces on the floor or ground to show people how far apart to sit or stand.
- Leave gates or doors open so people don’t have to touch the handles and regularly wipe down surfaces touched by several people. Here are the WHO’s suggestions on cleaning public areas.
- Keep windows open to help air circulation at an indoor event.
- Although no longer mandatory in parts of the UK, you may still want to wear a face covering, and encourage others to do so in smaller indoor spaces. A parade of decorated face coverings could be part of your Fun Palace. Also think about participants who need to see faces, like those who lip-read.
- Provide bins for people to discard used gloves or masks when they leave.
- You could ask people to use their own equipment (e.g. paper, pens) or provide them in a wide tray rather than a container to reach into. Provide another tray for “used” materials.
- If you can, provide a handwashing station with soap, water (ideally hot water), paper towels, and a bin, or hand sanitising station. Hygiene stations will need to be cleaned too.
- In a larger space think about how people will move around. A one-way system? Floor markings? Signage? How many people can join in, and maintain social distancing?
A tiny Fun Palace is unlikely to need public liability insurance, but if you have it through your venue or job, check it is still valid and the conditions you need to fulfil to keep it valid. If your Fun Palace might not be so tiny after all, check out more detailed guidelines for your circumstances.
The UK government has workplace guidelines on reducing the spread of COVID-19 with more detail on cleaning, distancing, face coverings etc.
Here are some detailed accessibility guidelines from the Disability Collaborative Network and the School of Health Sciences University of East Anglia
And some useful general guidance is here (not taking into account pandemics).
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Download our 1000 Tiny Fun Palaces mini-guide and share it offline with friends and neighbours.
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How can we keep our Fun Palace SAFE during COVID-19?
Sharing YOUR ideas for staying connected offline as well as online – connecting safely in community.