Dear SportAbility Membership:
We know you are grappling with the impacts of COVID-19 on yourselves and your ability to participate in your respective sport. We are eager to see sport return, but we also recognize that this is uncharted territory for all of us. The good news is that viaSport, along with public health officials and WorkSafe BC have started the process of creating guidelines for BC to return to sport in a phased approach. Only after Phase 1 has been implemented and monitored for effectiveness, viaSport and subsequently SportAbility will move to provide guidelines for Phases 2 and 3. SportAbility staff will be participating in roundtable discussions with viaSport and other sport organizations in order strengthen and finalize these guidelines.
Using these guidelines, we will then prepare sport-specific return to sport plans. We will consult with club leads and coaches of each sport before we take a finalized version to the SportAbility Board of Directors for approval. The plans for this first phase will have a specific focus on local training and skill development within your clubs and/or programs. Here is the definition provided by viaSport:
Q: What types of activities are allowed within this first phase of lifting restrictions?
A: Low risk activities that can occur with the following public health recommendations in place:
- Ability to maintain physical distancing
- Minimal sharing of equipment
- Focus is on skill development, not competition
- Community focused – Community focused sport activities take place within the home sport community or clubs where participants are members. This means avoiding cross-regional, inter-provincial or cross-country travel for sport.
If you are uncertain about the meaning of any aspect of the Restart Plan or the sport guidelines, we will strive to provide you with clarity where possible.
This is a fluid process and it can shift direction without much notice. At present time, all of our in-person programming remains suspended including practices, training camps, tournaments and social events. We know changes in direction or procedures can result in frustration, and so we will work closely with programmers and club leads to ensure that safe practices are in place for Return to Sport before notifying our members and moving forward. We will continue to work with you to share the latest public health recommendations as they become available.
Thank you for your ongoing commitment to sport in B.C., especially now. Please contact myself if you have any questions at this time.