As the winter months draw closer and lockdowns become more prevalent, we find ourselves less likely to be out enjoying diving and snorkelling. Here are some thoughts and updates for both clubs and members on keeping spirits high through the winter.
Keeping members engaged and active during this time is more important than ever and we want you to know that we will be doing all we can to provide webinars, learning experiences, activities and more for you and your members wherever possible.
BSAC CEO Mary Tetley said:
It’s been such a testing year for BSAC and we understand our members are facing personal challenges of their own. It’s so important for us all to stick together, show kindness and support one another when we don’t know what is around the corner.
We want to be there for you throughout the winter months and any second lockdowns. So, we have an exciting programme of webinars, as well as support for members and clubs which we hope will go some way to help.
Keeping you engaged and supported online
We’ve had a busy summer, filled with training and special interest webinars, new projects such as launching eLearning and keeping you updated on safety and guidelines. Hopefully, we have been somewhat successful in keeping you busy and will keep that programme running.
The online learning hub has grown exponentially since its launch in April and we hope to continue bringing new content for you including new weekly webinars and skills videos to practice at home, as well as opening this up for you to let us know what you’d like to see. Please contact Mark Paisey with any ideas you have.
How can clubs plan ahead?
Ultimately, we cannot know for certain what is around the corner. We hope that in the new year we will begin to see a much more convincing return to normality. Until then, we need to plan ahead for best- and worst-case scenarios for the next six months. Socials, Christmas parties, and AGMs will more than likely not be able to take place in large numbers as they usually would have, but that doesn’t mean that these events have to stop altogether.
Returning to early-lockdown’s online meetings could be a successful contingency plan for AGMs and club socials, while outdoor gatherings may be allowed with increasing numbers by Christmas, but it’s too early to say right now.
It may be worth having a small group of club members dedicated to coming up with ideas for both online-focussed social activities as well as in-person socially distanced activities, should restrictions allow.
Non-diving club activities
If club diving trips have to tail off, that doesn’t necessarily mean the end for in-person club activities. While club nights aren’t what they used to be, up to six people can still meet outdoors in most of the UK while remaining socially distanced (see Safe Return to Diving section for the latest guidelines).
Here are some ideas:
- Socially-distanced beach cleans or local litter picks
- Small group cycle ride
- Hike or countryside ramble (culminating in a beverage in a pub garden, perhaps!)
- Winter picnic or BBQ (the weather might be hit and miss but wrap up warm and it can be just as fun!)
Communication is key
As ever, keeping in touch and letting members know what is going on is a priority. This applies to BSAC headquarters just as much as it does to our individual clubs. We will be continuing to send BSAC Spirit, our fortnightly newsletter, keeping you updated of all our online events, safety updates and further news. BSAC Talk, our monthly email will also continue to run as usual, also with iSCUBA being sent out via email.
If you aren’t receiving these emails and would like to make sure you’re signed up, visit bsac.com/mybsac and check your preferences.
For clubs, the time to get into social media is now more than ever. We hope you have spent the last few months becoming more active online and staying in touch with your members, but it’s worth remembering that some clubs will also have members who are not as technologically able. Use any form of communication available to you, from Whatsapp groups to webpages, email newsletters or even a phone call catch up from Branch Officers would go a long way for those who aren’t online.
Remember that some of your members may still be shielding as well, so finding a way to keep everyone involved will go a long way to making them feel like they are still part of the community.
We’re here for you
Please remember that we are here to help. Whether you have questions, ideas or need further support, we would love to hear from you. Please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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