March 11, 2020 - The World Health Organization has officially declared COVID-19 a pandemic, therefore we strongly recommend that ALL Silent Book Club organizers worldwide postpone or cancel in-person meetups through April 1.
We understand the importance of community, especially in anxious times, and we encourage you all to stay connected through online channels (see suggestions below). Supporting our healthcare infrastructure and preventing community spread of the novel coronavirus is critical. Please read more here about the math behind this decision, and thank you for your help keeping vulnerable populations safe.
We will continue to update our members and organizers with information as it is available. Please reach out to Laura and Guinevere if you have questions. firstname.lastname@example.org
March 7, 2020 - The mission of Silent Book Club is to create a safe and welcoming space for readers to connect over a shared love of books. Live, in-person gatherings in public spaces are the foundation of our community, however the safety of our members is our top priority.
We wanted to send an update with some guidelines for SBC organizers in the face of the novel coronavirus. Many of our chapters have already been affected, particularly in Italy, and we have been monitoring developments and recommendations in the countries with the greatest number of SBC chapters (links below).
At this time, our recommendation for chapter organizers is to follow the recommendations of local authorities in your region. Here in San Francisco, all non-essential community events have been suspended for two weeks and the following social distancing recommendations have been put in place:
- Vulnerable populations should limit outings. Vulnerable populations also should not attend large gatherings unless it is essential. Vulnerable populations are people 60 years old and older; and people with health conditions such as heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and weakened immune systems.
- If you can telecommute, you should.
- Avoid people who are sick.
- Non-essential large gatherings should be cancelled or postponed. Do not attend any events or gatherings if you are sick.
- Everyone should avoid health care settings if possible – even if you are not ill.
If you have an upcoming Silent Book Club event that you need to cancel or postpone, here are a few options to stay connected with your local chapter:
- Set a time and host an online meetup using a video chat service like Google Hangouts or Zoom to share what you're currently reading.
- If you have a Facebook group or Instagram, start a "What are you reading" thread and encourage members to share thoughts and recommendations in the comments.
- Check out the SBC Online Facebook group for inspiration on how to host a Facebook Live event.
- You can also read about how to host an Instagram Live event.
Other ideas? We'd love to hear them! Email us at email@example.com. Please stay safe and wash your hands for 20 seconds!
Guinevere & Laura
Official guidelines by country: