Happy Wednesday! I hope this message finds each of you well and perhaps even tending a few plants in your office or garden. We can all benefit from the relaxation and restoration that comes from interacting with plants.
We have been receiving timely updates from UGA and Extension administration with direction for our Extension activities during this unprecedented and rapidly evolving time. Realizing that MGEVs have ongoing projects and events scheduled, including plant sales and training classes, the same advice and direction for UGA employees applies to our volunteers. Our first priority is to keep our communities safe. Local county Extension offices will follow the guidance of the local county governments, as per usual protocol.
During this time, please communicate with your Extension office, agent, and/or program coordinators for the rescheduling of events that involve large groups of people. Avoid group gatherings, such as in-person board or membership meetings. For discussions that cannot be postponed, consider using conference calling, webconferencing, or even Facetime to continue meeting virtually.
We want you to stay well during this viral outbreak. MGEVs are encouraged to follow the same practices recommended for UGA employees as prevention measures for any respiratory virus, including COVID-19:
- Adhere to social distancing practices and CDC guidance regarding groups and group activity.
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
While we understand the concerns and fear around COVID-19, it is extremely important to stay calm and maintain a close eye on your health and any symptoms that may arise. The symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Most cases of COVID-19 are mild with symptoms similar to a cold.
If you are looking for additional information or answers to questions, Extension is posting public messages on its Emergency Preparedness site. This information has also been added to the front of the public Extension page as well as to all local County Extension webpages. You will find general emergency preparedness materials, hygiene and handwashing information, activities for kids, and more.
We are, indeed, thankful for online communication methods that allow us to continue contact and communication in a virtual fashion. Thank you to each of you for your efforts!