COVID-19 & Scouting Impact News Feed

Update: 3/26/2020 5:40 pm

As our community and local economy continues to address the public health crisis, we remain committed to supporting the delivery of Scouting to our local families.

As announced earlier, our Council Service Centers and Scout Shops are physically closed, but we are offering support remotely.

Effective, Friday, March 27th, Council Services will be offered remotely 4 days a week: Monday-Thursday, 9:00 am-5:00 pm.

With a number of fundraisers postponed or cancelled, Annual Friends of Scouting campaign slowed, and many activities postponed, the economic impact to our council operations is significant. Among other cost-cutting measures, the council leadership made the decision to preserve program delivery support by reducing days of operations from 5 to 4 per week.

During this unprecedented crisis, we are doing everything we can to mitigate the impact to our employees and their families. As you are able, your support is needed now more than ever so we can continue to deliver Scouting today and in the future. Please consider a donation.

Click here for Scouting at Home resources
Click here for Advancement Guidance Q&A
Click here for Staff Roster

I encourage you to continue to keep Scouting on, sharing creative approaches to Scouting as well as its timeless values with family, friends and on social media.

Yours in Scouting,

Council Key 3
Phil DeCocco, Council President

Carmen Fuller, Council Commissioner

Jason Stein, Scout Executive

General Recommendations for Scouting Units, Events and Meetings

With the introduction of COVID-19 or Novel Coronavirus in municipalities served by the Silicon Valley Monterey Bay Council, many unit leaders and families may have questions regarding unit meetings, outings, and activities. We understand that the fluidity of this situation is causing uncertainty among units and volunteers in relation to its impact on Scouting programs.

The council’s Risk Management Committee and council leadership are monitoring the situation in real time and are monitoring changes to guidance and recommendations of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and county health departments and will continue to communicate updated recommendations as new information becomes available.

(Latest Information and Changes to previous guidance is noted in bold)

The council leadership is following the guidance of the Center of Disease Control (CDC), state and local health departments and recommends that Scouting Units also follow the recommendations of their state and local health department.  You can find these recommendations and requirements listed below:

County, State, and National Recommendations for Scouting Units, Events, and Meetings

Local health departments have placed additional restrictions depending on event or gathering size and risk level. Some current size recommendations of note from the CDC and local county and California health departments:

  • The Center for Disease Control: During the next 15 days, all U.S. events of 10+ people should be cancelled or held virtually.
  • Santa Clara County: Prohibition of all public gatherings and a shelter in place order until April 7, 2020.
  • Santa Cruz County: Prohibition of all public gatherings and a shelter in place order until April 7, 2020.
  • Monterey County: Prohibition of all public gatherings and a shelter in place order until April 8, 2020.
  • San Benito County: Prohibition of all public gatherings and a shelter in place order until April 7, 2020. 
  • State of California:  Prohibition of all public gatherings and a shelter in place order with no determined date of expiration. 

For the complete list of recommendations in your community, please visit the health department website or your local county health department website:

We do recommend that unit leaders, volunteers, and families take precautions and modify events to help prevent transmission according to the recommendations of their county health department. Unit leadership, council and district event chairs, may consider postponing or canceling meetings and activities if they feel it is in their best interest to do so or to align with recommendations from their local health department.

Per the recommendations of the CDPH, the best prevention against COVID-19 remains taking regular health precautions such as covering your mouth with a tissue or your elbow if you sneeze or cough, washing your hands with soap and water, and staying home if you are sick. One method to slow the spread of respiratory virus infections, including COVID-19, is by increasing social distancing (reduce close contact).


Council Service Center and Staffing

San Jose Service Center

In the interest of the safety and health of our volunteers, employees and community, we will be closing our Council Service Center and Scout Shop effective immediately and will re-open upon recommendations of CDC and state and local health departments. We do not have any known cases of COVID-19 within our staff, but think it is prudent to exercise social distancing as much as possible to reduce the spread of this virus.

We appreciate your understanding during this time and encourage you to reach out to any of our staff for remote assistance. You may also call our front desk directly for support at 408-638-8300. Please note that the staff will be available Monday – Thursday until further notice.

We will continue to post updates to our website and send communications to Scouter Weekly subscribers.

Salinas Service Center

The National Supply Scout Shop and Council Office in Salinas will be closed to follow the Shelter in Place Order of the Monterey County Department of Health and the State of California. As previously shared, National Council will cease operations the Salinas Scout Shop on March 19, 2020, and Silicon Valley Monterey Bay Council (SVMBC) will reopen the Scout Shop as a locally operated store on April 15, 2020, if conditions allow.    

If the county order is lifted before April 15, 2020, there will not be posted regular office or store hours. Upon the lifting of the order, office hours will be available by appointment. District Director Marcell Vargas, Field Director Steve Solberg, or Deputy Scout Executive Eric Tarbox will be glad to meet at a time convenient to you to help with any unit or volunteer needs and are available by phone or email in the interim.   Please note that the staff will be available Monday – Thursday until further notice. 

There is also a mail slot located on the Scout Shop door to drop off administrative items for your convenience.   

Council and District Event Status

The following is a list of upcoming council and district events and their status. Future events will be evaluated on an ongoing basis and may be postponed or canceled by their committee or council leadership if deemed to be in violation of health department recommendations and pose a high risk to participants.

Notifications will be sent to committees and participants if there is a change in status.

March 3/28/2020 Growing Future Leaders Hyatt Monterey Postponed – 9.26.20
March 3/28/2020 Wilderness First Aid Council Office Cancelled
March 3/28-3/29/2020 BALOO Chesebrough Cancelled
March 3/28/2020 Scouts Leader Specific Buddhist Temple Cancelled
April 4/1/2020 Skillicorn BBQ Watsonville Fundraiser / Postponed
April 4/3-4/5/2020 Loma Prieta Camporee Lehi Park Postponed
April 4/3-4/5/2020 Pioneer Camporee Cutter Postponed
April 4/3-4/5/2020 Polaris Camporee Chesebrough Postponed
April 4/4/2020 Scouts Leader Specific Elks Lodge Cancelled
April 4/11-4/12/2020 Wilderness First Aid Sheriff Office Cancelled
April 4/18/2020 CASA Cub Scout Leader Specifics Council Office Cancelled
April 4/17-4/19/2020 Outdoor Leader Skills Toro Park Cancelled
April 4/17-4/19/2020 Quicksilver Camporee Casa de Fruta Postponed
April 4/17-4/19/2020 Woodbadge Chesebrough Postponed – Aug & September
April 4/20/2020 Troop Committee Training Council Office Cancelled
April 4/22/2020 Council Coordinated Meeting Council Office On Schedule – Online
April 4/28/2020 Character Awards Dinner California Theater Postponed – September
April 4/23-4/26/2020 CHS Demo and Grading CHS On Schedule
April 4/25/2020 Cub Scout Leader Specific Council Office On Schedule – Online
April 4/26-29/2020 Board Retreat Philmont Postponed
May 5/1-5/3/2020 Coyote Creek Camporee Chesebrough Postponed
May 5/2/2020 Scouts BSA Leader Specific Council Office Cancelled
May 5/9/2020 Scout O Rama History Park Postponed – October
May 5/16-5/17/2020 Woodbadge Boulder Creek Postponed – Aug & September
May 5/17-19/2020 Partner and Pal Cub Camp Chesebrough TBD
May 5/17/2020 Swiss Rifle Club Shooting Match Swiss Rifle Club 4.22 Decision
May 5/22-24/2020 Memorial Day Family Camp Chesebrough TBD
May 5/29-5/31/2020 BALOO Chesebrough 5.13 Decision
May 5/29-5/31/2020 Outdoor Leader Skills Chesebrough 5.13. Decision
May 5/29-5/31/2020 OA Ordeal Camp Hi-Sierra 5.1.20 Decision

Please note, at this time, council and district committee meetings and roundtables are still scheduled, but accommodations will be made to allow participants to review remotely The council has remote conference tools available for council committee use. Please contact your staff advisor to arrange for your meeting.

Refund Policy

For all Scouting program and training events postponed or cancelled by the council, a full refund will be provided. For those who choose not to participate in an event, the standard refund policy applies. For more information on refunds, you can contact the event staff advisor or the council service center. A full copy of the council refund policy can be found on the council website at

Latest Council Guidance Concerning COVID-19

Silicon Valley Monterey Bay Council, in addition to other communications, will be updating this website with the additional recommendations as new information becomes available.

For questions or more information on this notice, please contact William Albrecht, Jason Stein, Eric Tarbox or Michael Wilson at (408) 638-8300.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can people protect themselves?

  • Washing hands with soap and water.
  • Avoiding touching eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
  • Staying away from work, school or other people if you become sick with respiratory symptoms like fever and cough.
  • Following guidance from public health officials.

To learn more about COVID-19 and recommendations for protecting yourself please visit the CDC website.

What do you do if you think you’re sick?

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and may have had contact with a person with COVID-19 or recently traveled to countries with apparent community spread, call your health care provider or local public health department first before seeking medical care so that appropriate precautions can be taken.

What can be done to a make a gathering safer if it is essential or small?

  • Stagger activities.
  • Add frequency of an event to spread out attendance, e.g. hold more, smaller gatherings.
  • Add distance between where individuals sit or stand around tables.
  • Add additional hand washing stations and restrooms.
  • Limit the number of people in lines.
  • Avoid direct physical contact, such as hand-shaking, holding hands, and hugging.
  • Extend hours to allow for staggering of attendance or participation.
  • Use phones, videos or video conferencing to reduce the need for close interactions.
  • Consider ways to encourage anyone with fever and respiratory symptoms to stay home when sick.
  • Placing messages on websites, social media, and venue entrances reminding people to protect one another by staying home if sick.
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