Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): organised activities for children

Published: 7 Dec 2020
Last updated: 19 Jul 2021 - see all updates

Guidance for the safe running of organised activities for children and young people.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): organised activities for children
Food, drinks and parties

Food, drinks and parties

Sharing and preparation of snacks, meals or drinks

It is not recommended to permit food and drink to be consumed in the setting used, unless essential for medical reasons.  If providers permit use of kitchen areas, service users staff and volunteers should bring their own cups/cutlery. Surfaces in kitchen areas should be cleaned and disinfected in between each use. Sharing of food or drink should not take place.

Parties (organised activity)

Parties can be carried out as part of a formal, organised activity by a service provider, such as a party entertainer or facilitator subject to the capacity of the venue based on physical distancing guidance. No more than 8 facilitators, including the main service provider, should attend at one time.

Because parties are generally considered higher risk activities due the increased mixing of households and activities involved,  this guidance should be considered very carefully, with appropriate risk assessments carried out. It is recommended that parties do not take place inside venues unless an area is at Level 1 or below. Maximum numbers permitted should be based on space available using the guidance set out here.

Parties may take place outside, as part of a business or service, from Level 3, where space allows for appropriate physical distancing and all other measures can be adhered too. 

At all levels, sharing of food, drink, utensils, blowing out candles, singing in groups etc and other activities that are likely to be higher risk should continue to be avoided.

If children are brought together, through parent or peer led activity, that is not part of a business or service, the numbers who could meet at any one time would need considered under the general gathering rules and different restrictions apply based on the Level the area is in and where the gathering takes place eg. indoor/outdoor.

Physical based activities

Where more physical based activities are taking place that don’t follow Sport Governing Body guidance, or any other guidance, they will come under this guidance.  These are not permitted indoors at Level 4.

Breakfast Clubs

Breakfast clubs form an important part of the day for many children and families, addressing issues of food insecurity but also providing important accessible childcare options for many working parents at the start of the day. We would encourage services who are delivering breakfast clubs to operate in line with the guidance provided for regulated school age childcare provision. This guidance provides information on how to work safely with groups of children indoors, limiting contacts for children and ensuring physical distancing between children and adults where possible. It also contains guidance around group numbers and staffing as well as the use of face coverings and increased hygiene measures for any equipment used.

Services may also find the catering section of the schools guidance useful in their considerations.

Guidance from Food Standards Scotland (FSS), which includes a risk assessment tool and checklist should be followed. Any setting wishing to provide a breakfast service should follow this risk assessment tool and checklist. Further advice around mitigating any issues identified by the risk assessment can be requested from the local environmental health team. Additionally, this Q&A from FSS may be useful.

First published: 7 Dec 2020 Last updated: 19 Jul 2021 -