In my last update I outlined the three key criteria to underpin the "CoVid Secure" environment that would enable us to re-open runs safely and sustainably - namely comprehensive risk assessments, additional volunteer training, and technology that would enable us to track and trace participants. I would like to use today's update to share progress.
Risk Assessment: We have been working hard, with the support of our new partners at Sport England to develop a thorough risk assessment and supporting plans to re-open social runs. As you might expect, whilst there is still underlying infection in the UK, a number of careful and cautious mitigations are required to help us reduce the risks.
The plans are almost complete and reflect a need to make some essential changes to our processes, with the safety of our volunteers, runners, and members of the general public always front of mind, but also aiming to retain the welcoming and informal nature that our runs have always offered.
Volunteer Training: It is even more vital than ever that our volunteers feel well supported and appropriately trained to lead runs in this new environment. With that in mind, we have continued to work closely with our Run Angel team to answer their questions, understand any concerns and to identify any areas of additional training they may want ahead of runs re-opening. From this we have almost completed some new online training modules covering the key areas they identified, and which all Angels will have access to in the next week or two.
Track and Trace Technology: As many of you know, pre CoVid we did not have a formal system for registering and scanning runners. We had it in our plans to build a system, and the current crisis has accelerated the requirement for this before runs can re-open. So we are currently working towards building additional features into the TMR App that will enable us to register runners, manage run numbers and track run attendance. For obvious reasons this is absolutely essential, but it is a complex, lengthy and expensive development process. We are also currently testing some off the shelf platforms that will enable us to do what is needed in the short term and we hope this work will be completed in the next couple of weeks.
So we are moving forwards and so much great work has been completed - but there is still some way to go.
Our goal has always been to create a plan and processes that will enable a return to all of our 60+ run locations at the same time.
As many of the processes and IT will be new, we'll go through a phased return - starting small initially to enable us to test everything works, to make sure our volunteers and runners are happy and that we can exist alongside the general public safely - before slowly scaling operations up again more fully.
We will have a clearer idea of timings and more detailed plans in the next week or two. As I know you'll be eager to know more about when runs will be able to open, I will provide an update here every week, as well as in our social channels. As always, if you have any specific questions you can contact the team on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whilst we work through a phased return to social runs, we've also been working hard to create a programme of virtual challenges and classes for anyone unable to attend these (or anyone looking for additional ways to stay active and connected).
We will be launching our brand new virtual challenge programme - yes, with medals! - later today and sharing an update on the continuation of our virtual classes in the next few days too. So there is lots to look forward to.
It goes without saying, we are grateful for your continued patience, support and love, it means the world - and I am constantly reminded what a special space the TMR community holds for us all.
Much love to you all and stay safe,