News - 5th May 2020
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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Update: 5 May

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Thanks again to all the event teams and ambassadors who have generously given us their time over the last few weeks, and shared the challenges they are facing at local level around the world.

 

We have now spoken directly to over 700 of those volunteers and continue to gain valuable insight.

 

Based on those conversations there are three key points we would like to share in this week’s update.

 

Firstly, the decision to re-open any parkrun country will be made by parkrun Global (the UK-based charity) in collaboration with staff or senior volunteers in that country, and alongside relevant and local public health guidance.

 

All public announcements of parkrun countries reopening (or not) will be made firstly through this weekly update. Anything you see outside of this channel is not necessarily the official position of parkrun, and we will not be commenting on speculation or rumours.

 

Secondly, we continue to see governments release greater detail around how they plan to relax restrictions in their region. In some cases this is, understandably, leading to questions from the parkrun community with regards where parkrun may fit into those timelines.

 

At this moment we do not see any country we operate in presenting guidelines that would reasonably accommodate parkrun events in the near future. Should that change this will be the first place we make any comment.

 

Importantly, we will not consider opening parkrun countries anywhere where there is even a small chance of exceeding participant limits for public gatherings at a single event.

 

Also, at this time, we are not considering starting events where doing so would mean participants or volunteers are required to maintain a certain distance between each other.

 

Thirdly, in most countries we operate in it is likely to be several months before we consider it appropriate to reopen our events. By then, the world’s understanding of this virus will be very different, as will society’s feelings about it.

 

As such we do not believe it sensible to comment on the many social distancing or hygiene-based suggestions currently being proposed as ways to either get parkrun up and running as soon as possible or to mitigate any risks when we do return.

 

To reiterate a point from a previous update, in all instances we will be taking a cautious approach to re-opening our events. We will only be doing so where both that country’s specific public health guidelines comfortably allow, and where we can be confident that our volunteer teams will not be placed under undue pressure.

 

Thanks for your continued patience, understanding, and support.

 

We will get through this, together.

 

Tom Williams

Chief Operating Officer

parkrun Global

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