Norway gives green light for children's free time activities

The Local Norway
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Norway gives green light for children's free time activities
Culture Miniser Abid Raja announced the decision on Monday. Photo

Children and young people in Norway have been given the green light to restart a range of sports and free time activities, so long as they can find a way to stick to strict social distancing and hygiene guidelines.


Culture minister Abid Raja told the NTB newswire on Monday afternoon that sports teams, choirs, bands, and other group activities for children and young people could now restart, although he stressed they should only take place "so long as the infection rules are upheld".  
Andreas Borud, Secretary-General of the Norwegian Children and Youth Council, said that the decision would be welcomed by young people across the country. 
"I think it's very positive," he said. "Over time, I think we will see a careful increase in the selection of activities that they can offer their members." 
But he warned that which sorts of sports or other pastimes could resume would be limited by what is possible under infection guidelines.
"It's going to be a very limited list of activities if you have to keep to groups of five people and keep a distance of two metres," he warned.  


The Norwegian Guide and Scout Association has already analysed their normal activities to better understand which of them can be restarted over the next couple of weeks, with youth political movements undergoing a similar process.
"Activities that don't involve much physical contact are most likely to start first, together with activities that are outdoors," Borud said. "A lot of the political youth organisations will soon be able to hold meetings at their local branches." 
Football, and other team sports will also restart training, although normal matches remain out of the question. 
"The sports movement was very early in creating their own guidelines for how you could have training, and they have made guidelines for this together with the healthcare authorities, so a lot of sports clubs are also arranging activities now." 
The marching bands which play such a big role in the country's National Day celebrations on May 17 will also soon restart rehearsals. 
"Marching bands and choirs will be able to restart some of their activities not far from now -- but it won't be a full marching band standing in a usually cramped space," Borud stressed. 



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