NAYT COVID-19 Response

Wednesday 25 March 2020

Hi everyone. We here at NAYT have been blown away by the adaptability our sector has shown in serving young people across the country. It' s great how many digital online youth theatres are already going ahead. It's going to be a lifeline to the young people whose worlds have collapsed around them and it’s a real testament to the creativity within our sector that we are already seeing so much innovation and imagination in keeping your services going.

However if you haven't started an online youth theatre yet or are thinking ‘perhaps this isn’t the right thing for my groups’ or ‘I’m not sure I have the skills or confidence to do this’ don't feel you have to rush or that it is an essential. Most young people will be OK for a week or so while all this isolation and digital contact is a novelty. In caring for the wellbeing of our young people and all you wonderful staff, it’s vital that we don’t put pressure on ourselves at what is already a tough time.

If you are unable to work with your groups due to your heath, employment circumstances or Government legislation, we encourage you to not feel guilty in these unprecedented times.

It may well be that the most important thing for your young people and staff is to take a well earned break, communicate via email or your existing channels or even embrace a bit of analogue or offline communication.

If you do decide to embark on a digital journey, your existing policies around safeguarding and online media will need to be amended.

We will release some example policies and Risk assessments next week if you haven't already got them to help make that step as clear and straightforward as possible. We are also already collecting some examples of amazing practice from all across the sector in keeping young people and families engaged while in isolation, so do keep sharing what you’re doing.