07 October 2020

Advice on Level 3 Restrictions for Youth Theatres

As Ireland moves to Level 3 Covid19 restrictions, we understand that youth theatres will have lots of questions about what this means for you and your autumn programming.

As an organisation, we understand the difficulty moving to Level 3 is having on youth theatres around the country, particularly after you have put in so much work around re-opening and preparing your space, your leaders, and your members for youth theatre activities in the current environment.

The team in Youth Theatre Ireland are here to support you, and we are working on an update to Youth Theatre Ireland’s Back in the Circle guidance and this will be re-issued shortly and posted on our Covid19 Resources for Youth Theatres webpage, which you'll find here and across our social media channels. 

In the meantime, however:

  • All youth theatres are advised to continue to follow the DCYA Guidance. You can read the full guidance by clicking here. You can also provide the link to this guidance to venues, parents and young people. For your conveninece, the full web address is: https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/58393-guidance-for-youth-organisations-on-resuming-full-services-after-covid-19/.  Guidance for the youth work sector falls under Section 14: Schools, Early Learning and Childcare Services, Adult and Higher Education in the Government’s Plan: Resilience and Recovery 2020-2021: Plan for Living with COVID-19, which you can access by clicking here.
  • At Level 3, the DCYA guidance states that youth services / youth clubs (including youth theatres) can continue to do small group work with groups of 15 (including leaders) as long as the venue is large enough to maintain social distancing and at least 1 metre physical distancing is maintained at all times. Please see the full DCYA Guidance document, which is linked above, for details on activities allowed at Level 3 and the procedures/policies which should be put in place.

Our feedback from youth theatres, who had already begun re-opening under level 3 restrictions, was that the key challenge had been accessing venues in which to run workshops / activities because they have been advised to close to members of the public under Level 3 of Resilience and Recovery 2020-2021: Plan for Living with COVID-19 [Section 3 (Organised Indoor Gatherings) and Section 8 (Museums, Galleries and other Cultural Attractions)].

It is worth contacting your venue to ascertain their plans, to advise them of the DCYA guidelines, and to see whether they will allow you to continue with workshops / activities. If you own/lease your own venue, your youth theatre will be in a better position to continue with regular activities under the DCYA guidance; however, it is still worth communicating clearly with parents, young people and the local community about the DCYA guidance which is allowing you to continue operating under comprehensive procedures and policies.

If you have any further questions in relation to operating under Level 3 restrictions while you await our updated guidelines, please don’t hesitate to contact Eoghan Doyle at eoghan@youththeatre.ie.

8 October 2020 update: The Back in the Circle Guidance has now been updated and is available here or on our Covid19 Resources for Youth Theatres webpage here.

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