Managing youth sector activities and spaces during COVID-19

The National Youth Agency (NYA) as the Professional Statutory and Regulatory Body for youth work in England has developed youth sector specific advice and guidance. The guidance will support local providers, leaders, volunteers and young people to remain safe when engaging in youth sector activities. It is intended to guide the youth sector in opening up services for young people at the right pace and time.

This guidance must be used in conjunction with the readiness framework and your existing safeguarding policies and procedures. It is complementary to government guidance on social distancing, travel and other measures which must be adhered to.

The Readiness Level is currently GREEN.

  • All young people will be able to attend indoor or outdoor activities. Youth provision for young people of all ages, both under and over 18 years of age, have the same requirements.
  • All youth provision may meet indoors or outdoors without limitations on group size. The NYA no longer require youth sector providers to operate bubbles or limit group sizes to a maximum number of attendees outside of measures usually in place for safe working practices. However, the NYA requires providers to review their Action Plans and Risk Assessments and take steps to reduce the risk of community transmission. For example, consider how to manage groups of young people to a manageable number to minimise the risk of transmission.
  • Online/digital, detached/outdoor and 1-2-1 youth sector provision will remain available to all young people.
  • Trips and visits are permitted.
  • Travel by minibus, taxi, public transport, or private car (subject to safeguarding) are permitted. The youth sector’s goal at all times should be to minimise the risk of COVID transmission. 
  • Overnight and residential experiences are permitted. No group size restrictions apply to the youth sector. The same measures apply to all age groups.
  • Lateral Flow Testing for residentials is highly recommended.
  • For more detail on leading residential and overnight events please see page 15 of the full guidance document below.
  • International travel is permitted in line with Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office travel advice.

Current Guidance Document

Everyone should read the guidance document below and follow the recommended actions and requirements. This guidance is intended for use in England (Version 11) from the 1st April 2022. Click below to view the guidance documents.

Managing youth sector activities and spaces during COVID-19 (V11)

The youth sector has specific and unique challenges and needs, and this guidance has been developed to support your practice.

Additional tools and resources to support this guidance can be found here.

National associations for specific types of organisations (uniformed, etc.) and activities may have additional advice and guidance to safeguard young people and in related areas of sports, culture and the arts, which are included in or make use of facilities for youth activities. Our thanks to:

  • Minister for Civil Society
  • Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (Youth and Loneliness Team)
  • Department for Education
  • Duke of Edinburgh
  • Girlguiding UK
  • Local Government Association
  • Onside
  • Princes Trust
  • Regional Youth Work Unit’s Network
  • Scouts
  • UK Youth
  • Unison
  • Unite the Union
  • Youth United Foundation members

If you have any feedback for us, please email

Please read our legal statement on the above guidance

Key Worker Information

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