What we are planning to do…

 

During lockdown we have been providing remote support and maintaining interaction online and via telephone calls in group and 1-2-1 sessions with as many young people as possible, as well as providing over 10,000 meals to families and young people 5 days per week. 

We are maintaining those services and also providing a 3 day a week outreach service where young people and members of the community can engage with our teams on the streets. 

When we receive official announcement from the Government we will start to offer closed group and 1:1 sessions to young people, this will be invite only. 

Assuming we receive Government guidance, we will be partially opening the Youth Zone building on 3rd August for limited numbers of young people who would benefit most from regular, face-to-face engagement with youth workers through our “Get Stuck In” Holiday programme. 

Achieving this whilst protecting the health and wellbeing of young people, employees, volunteers and the wider community is our primary focus.

Strict capacity management, social distancing and hygiene measures will be in place that are in-line with guidance from the government, Public Health England, the NHS, Health and Safety Executive and wider stakeholders including the local authority, local schools, and supporting patrons and business. 

Measures may involve staggering and rotating attendance to maintain safe capacity levels, increased outdoor activities where possible and a limit on the amount of time young people spend at the Youth Zone and neighbourhood sites. 

We’re aiming for a maximum of 50 young people to be able to regularly attend the Youth Zone week commencing 3rd August. 

All plans will be closely monitored and may adjust in response to internal and external factors.  

When is the Youth Zone building going to fully re-open?

Unfortunately, this is not yet clear and will be dictated by wider Coronavirus restrictions and guidance.

We are constantly reviewing the situation and will provide additional detail when we are able to.

With your plans, who will be able to access face-to-face provision (indoor or outdoor) and how have you arrived at that decision?

If we receive an official announcement from the Government prior to the 3rd August we will offer a closed group and 1:1 sessions to young people, this will be invite only. 

From 3rd August we are planning the partial opening of the Youth Zone building for limited numbers of young people who would benefit most from regular, face-to-face engagement with youth workers.

Young people, parents or guardians can also request to attend the Youth Zone by contacting: 

Youth Zone building access measures may involve staggering and rotating attendance to maintain safe capacity levels, increased outdoor activities where possible and a limit on the amount of time young people spend at the Youth Zone.

This will ensure we maintain strict capacity management, social distancing and hygiene measures in line with guidance from government and wider stakeholders

Whilst this is far from ideal, it is important to balance the needs of young people with Coronavirus restrictions and guidance.

We will be continuing to provide universally accessible online and telephone support whilst increasing our provision with detached (in the community) work as of the 15th June. Blackburn Youth Zone staff will be in a number of areas across BwD and will provide young people to receive support, engage in positive conversation and meet a friendly face.  

How many young people will be able to access face-to-face provision (indoor or outdoor) at any one time?

We are also planning the partial opening of the Youth Zone building on 3rd August for limited numbers of young people who would benefit most from regular, face-to-face engagement with youth workers.

We’re aiming for a maximum of 50 young people per day to be able to regularly attend the Youth Zone week commencing 3rd August. This will form a part of the “Get Stuck In” project Find out more via www.getstuckin.org.uk

Our detached work will also ensure around 4 of young people at one given time (complying with the 6 bubble rule accounting for 2 youth workers) will be able to engage face-to-face with youth workers in community settings including, 

  • Darwen 
  • Town Centre 
  • Whiteberk 
  • Audley 
  • Mill Hill 

All plans will be closely monitored and may adjust in response to internal and external factors.  

What hours will the face-to-face provision be available, and where will it take place?

Youth Zone building opening hours will be as follows (as of the 3rd August), 

Blackburn Youth Zone

  • 8 to 12 years old Monday to Thursday 10.00am to 2.00pm 
  • 13 to 19 (up to 21 for SEND) years old Monday, Tuesday and Thursday (4.00pm to 8.00pm) and Saturday (1.00pm to 5.00pm)

Darwen 

  • Monday to Thursday (10.00am to 2.00pm) 

Mill Hill

  • Tuesday to Friday (10.00am to 2.00pm)

Our detached service will also ensure around 4 young people (at one time) will be able to engage face-to-face with youth workers in a community setting including, 

    • North BWD including Bangor Street Community Centre including Troy Street MUGA, Audley & Queens Park, Roe Lee area, Revidge Fold (Between 5.00pm and 8.00pm every Wednesday)
    • South  BWD including arwen Youth Centre, Darwen Town Centre, Ash Grove (Reach Out), Junction 4 services, Lower Darwen (St James), Highercroft MUGA (Between 5.00pm and 8.00pm every Friday)
    • East  BWD including Mill Hill Community Centre, Livesey All Age Centre, Feniscowles area, Ewood Area (Between 5.00pm and 8.00pm every Wednesday)

 

What activities will young people be able to take part in?

Until the 3rd August the youth zone will provide 

  • Seven day a week digital offer – Please refer to our social media channels for the latest digital programme 
  • 3 day a week detached service 
  • 7 day a week support service, providing young people someone to talk to (including digital mentoring) 

After the 3rd August we will provide 

  • A Holiday club service across three sites including Blackburn Youth Zone, Mill Hill community centre and Darwen for young people aged 8 to 19 (up to 21 for SEND) years. Find more information via www.getstuckin.org.uk
  • Seven day a week digital offer 
  • 3 day a week detached service 
  • Support service whereby young people can share their highs and lows with a trusted adult 

 

Will my child be able to attend with their friends?

Yes and No. The Get Stuck In programme will allow friends to attend at one given time. That said, there are limited spaces and we can not guarantee everyone can gain a place. 

We are taking early bookings for the “Get Stuck In” project, which is a free service that provides your young person the opportunity to engage in positive activity within safe and robust controls. 

Take advantage of the early booking via- www.getstuckin.org.uk/book-your-place/ 

Is it still 50p per visit, and will you be accepting cash?

No. We appreciate that it is a difficult time for many families as well as handling cash increasing the risk of contracting COVID-19 further therefore be waiving the 50p entrance fee until further notice. This includes our holiday club project, which is FREE to attend. 

Membership is also free until further notice and we are advising all young people and parents to complete a new membership via the link, https://www.blackburnyz.org/become-a-member/new-membership/, using the code JULYFREE 

If you would like to support Blackburn Youth Zone you can donate via our website https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/donation-web/charity?charityId=1002220&stop_mobi=yes

Safety:

What measures have you taken to ensure your plan is safe and how will you be managing social distancing and hygiene measures?

We have conducted a detailed risk assessment and modified aspects of service delivery and building use in line with restrictions and guidance. Blackburn Youth Zone is an approved “Covid-19 workplace” and has had all risk assessment, policies and insurance reviewed and approved by external specialists. 

Things we have done to maintain people’s safety 

  • We have marked out 1-metre plus spacings within the Youth Zone to help young people and employees maintain this distance. We will remain vigilant and enforce this rule as best we can.
  • The building has a one way foot fall system 
  • A screen has been put in place at reception as well as hand sanitizer being available for everyone who enters the building. It will also be available at many locations throughout the building and regular hand washing is encouraged.
  • There will be regular cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces and objects that are frequently touched by young people and staff. Deep cleans are scheduled for when the Youth Zone is closed.

We will continue to follow guidance from the government, NHS, Public Health England, Health and Safety Executive and wider stakeholders including the local authority, local schools, and supporting businesses. 

All plans will be closely monitored and may adjust in response to internal and external factors.

Will young people be able to or be required to wear masks?

In-line with current government guidance, young people can choose to wear a mask if they wish and do not have any health conditions that would prevent them from doing so. Blackburn Youth Zone will not be providing masks and young people and visitors are expected to bring their own. 

Have you made changes to the building and how it is used?

We have mapped out 1 metre plus markings within the Youth Zone to help young people and employees maintain this distance.  

We’ve also, 

  • Removed free roaming from our programme (young people will remain in set activities)
  • No contact during any activity 
  • Robust and effective entering and exiting the building processes 
  • One way footfall system to ensure we maintain social distancing in corridors, doorways and smaller spaces  

Who has been consulted regarding the plan? 

The plan has been created using guidance from the government, NHS, Public Health England, Health and Safety Executive and wider stakeholders such as the local authority, local schools, and local businesses with specialists workers within safety controls relating to covid-19.  

We will continue to follow this guidance and the plan will be closely monitored and may adjust in response to internal and external factors.

Have workers and volunteers received additional training?

Yes. All staff and volunteers have received training relating to infection control including Covid-19 safe practice.

Will workers and volunteers be wearing PPE such as masks?

No. In-line with government guidance, workers and volunteers can choose to wear a mask if they wish and do not have any health conditions that would prevent them from doing so.

Staff and volunteers will wear a mask in exceptional circumstances where it is essential to be closer than two meters, such as if someone becomes unwell or requires medical attention during a session.

Will workers and volunteers be regularly tested?

In line with the current government guidance staff do not need to be routinely tested. 

We request that staff, volunteers and young people do not attend the Youth Zone if they, or someone in their household, display any Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms. They should follow government guidance on self-isolation, using the track and trace service and being tested.

What will you do if someone involved in a face-to-face session or one of their family members/guardians is showing symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

We have amended our policies  which set out to irritate and emphasise the importance of any young person and their families having a duty of care to notify Blackburn Youth Zone at first opportunity if they and/or family members start to display symptoms. 

BYZ will communicate with all young people, their families and staff if we receive notice from families and further guidance from Public Health relating to a positive test of covid-19. 

The future:

Are there plans to increase the number of young people who can access face-to-face provision?

Our plan is to enable a limited number of young people to safely attend the Youth Zone facility in line with Coronavirus restrictions and guidance. We hope this number can increase over the coming weeks and months.

We’re aiming for a maximum of 50 of young people to be able to regularly attend the Youth Zone week commencing 3rd August. 

Whilst this is far from ideal, it is important to balance the needs of young people with Coronavirus restrictions and guidance.

We will be continuing to provide universally accessible remote support and maintaining interaction online and via telephone calls and are increasing our provision with targeted detached work, summer holiday club (Get Stuck In) and key work support

When will the Youth Zone building be open to all members again?

As with many organisations, we are currently unsure as to when we will be able to open the building to all members again. We continue to closely monitor guidance from the government, NHS, Public Health England, Health and Safety Executive and wider stakeholders including the local authority, local schools, and supporting businesses and will provide additional detail when we are able to.

Who should I speak to if I want more information about  Youth Zone’s phased reopening plan?

Fahima Iqbal (Head of service for 5 to 12 years) 

Johny Ainsworth (Head of service for 13 to 25 years)

Additional useful guidance links:

NHS: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Government guidance and support: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Blackburn Youth Zone

We are Blackburn Youth Zone, a state of the art youth club facility located at the heart of Blackburn. Blackburn Youth Zone is a 21st century youth hub for young people aged 5 to 25 years old, aiming to irrevocably change the prospects offered to young people in the area.

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