18753
U3A COVID-19 - NOV. UPDATE

COVID-19 AND OUR U3A - UPDATED 4 NOVEMBER 2020

LATEST UPDATE
As you will probably be aware, the new National Lockdown restrictions will initially be imposed from 00:01 a.m. on 5 November ’20 and will operate until 2 December ’20, at the earliest, across the whole of England, with the plan (if appropriate) to ease them on a local and regional basis. Unfortunately, this means that all of our indoor activity groups will remain closed until further notice and the planned reopening of our outdoor activity groups will be postponed, for at least this period of time.

These are the restrictions that directly affect the operation of our U3A:

  • Requirement to stay at home apart from very specific purposes.
  • No mixing of households inside homes, except for childcare and other support.
  • No mixing of households outside, except for exercising or visiting a public place with one other person.
  • People who shielded in March do not have to shield again, but clinically vulnerable and over-60s are advised to limit social contacts and follow rules carefully.

But, outdoor exercise and recreation is encouraged and is unlimited – BUT only with your household and/or bubble, on your own or with one other person from a different household.

More detailed information is available here:
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november

Whilst many of us may have initially felt that the limitation imposed on us as a result of Covid-19 would only last for a short time, it is clear its impact on us all is going to be for a much longer period and that we will need to work collaboratively and supportively to help keep our U3A going.

As previously suggested below, we would encourage all members to use, where possible, other methods of communicating within their group(s).



POSSIBLE OPTIONS
Whilst restrictions remain in place for all groups, we would encourage all members to consider (as there are a number of groups that might benefit) meeting within their activity groups using new(ish) video technologies such as WhatsApp, Skype or Zoom - our Computer Group remain available to help if necessary. As we also have a licenced Zoom account we can provide online meeting facilities to members. This system has been successfully used by Committee and also the Law For Fun group have now successfully met four times with interesting topics discussed. We have also re-introduced our 'Friday Quiz Night' (see the website for further details). We are extemely grateful to those members who regularly post on the website and would encourage more people to do so, thank you.

FURTHER ADVICE
All of the latest Government guidance highlights the need to remain vigilant and review local lockdown regulations to determine whether this and/or other guidance still applies in our area. The road ahead during this new transition phase into a national lockdown is clearly going to be complex and will require us to watch for any further changes that may occur. At this time we need to remain vigilant and take any measures we can to plan for the future easing of restrictions, while remaining cautious and not taking unnecessary risks.

AGM
As previously posted on the website, our AGM remains in abeyance. We will not reconvene the AGM until such time as we can all safely come back together, but we will keep this decision under review, as we may be forced to reconvene online. A major topic of our AGM concerns our finances. To that end we have had our accounts successfully examined, Committee is extremely grateful to Sefton CVS who provided this vital service to us during these very difficult times.

Although we will not be holding our AGM, a detailed written report together with our Independent Examiner’s report, will shortly be presented to the Charity Commission (a legal requirement), this will be available to view on their website once it has been approved.


COMMITTEE
As ever, Committee continue to work in the background to discuss and manage issues as they arise, remotely. Should you wish to raise any questions please do not hesitate to contact us by email at: mandlu3a@gmail.com

The Committee would like to thank everyone for their continued patience and support during these very difficult times. As we continue to endeavour to ensure the safety of all of our Members, we would like to assure you that we will attempt to open up various activities only when we feel that it is safe to do so.


Thank you,
Maghull and Lydiate U3A – Committee.