MDNW coronavirus update

Here’s our round up of news about COVID-19 relevant to the sector from this week. These are up to date at the time of posting but please check the original source for any updates.

To look back at any of our previous blog posts and their links, find them on our website using the search term ‘coronavirus’.

Museum reopening guidance
NMDC Good Practice Guidelines (10th September)
Updates are made regularly (and listed at the bottom of the website) as government guidance changes so keep checking the website to make sure you are working to the most recent version. The latest update includes amendments to reflect the new 6-person limit on social gatherings, the mandatory recording of data for NHS Test & Trace and a link to the Health & Safety Executive’s guidance on ventilation and air-conditioning during the coronavirus outbreak.

Read our blog post here for the full list of guidance and resources around reopening and view recordings (subtitles are available) on our YouTube channel of our reopening webinars. Please note that the advice given within these videos was based on the most up to date Government guidance at the time of recording and may have changed since.

Latest government information
Latest information and advice (11th September)

Coronavirus (COVID-19): What has changed (9th September)
The government has announced new measures to suppress the virus and keep the number of infections down, including not meeting with people from other households socially in groups of more than 6. This will apply indoors and outdoors, including in private homes. COVID-19 secure venues (including museums) can still host larger numbers in total but groups of up to 6 must not mix or form larger groups. Businesses will have a clear duty to support NHS Test and Trace. From 18th September, it will be mandatory for certain businesses to have a system to collect NHS Test and Trace data, and keep this for 21 days.

Kickstart scheme (2nd September)
Government scheme to provide apprenticeships is now open to applications. The placements will be 6 months long, 25 hours per week and for 16-24 year-olds claiming Universal Credit. Applications must be for a minimum of 30 job placements, ruling out most museums’ ability to apply to the scheme, but if an organisation is unable to offer this many placements it can partner with other organisations as a consortium to reach the minimum number.

Curious Minds, the Bridge organisation for the North West, is interested in gauging the interest and needs of the North West’s cultural sector in relation to Kickstart. They are carrying out a survey to collect an idea of organisations who would be interested in joining a Kickstart consortium, to get a picture of its viability in the North West. 

Arts Council England
National Lottery Project Grants
National Lottery Project Grants are open for applications. Until April 2021, the fund will focus on the needs of smaller independent organisations and individual practitioners. Supplementary guidance has been published that outlines the changes. The fund will also focus more on activity that gives organisations the time to think, plan and test new ideas. For the first time with this fund, ACE will be able to invest in activity where the route to public engagement may take longer, and may take place beyond the boundaries of the activity you apply for. The usual requirement to provide 10% match funding has been removed.

Museum Development North West
Funding sources (7th September)
We have updated our list of current funding sources available for the sector. It includes both general museum funding and Covid-19 specific funds.

ACE National Lottery Project Grants bid-writing support (10th September)
We have extended our bid-writing support offer to museums to work with Laura Drane on applications to ACE’s National Lottery Project Grants on a first come first served basis.

Association of Independent Museums
AIM have a page on their website dedicated to coronavirus resources, including news and advocacy and sources of UK government support. Elsewhere on the website are reopening guidance resources, details of the AIM Hallmarks at Home training, ALVA attractions recovery tracker and online advice surgeries.

Art Fund Respond and Reimagine Grants
The final round of applications is now open for grants to help museums, galleries and cultural organisations respond to immediate challenges connected to the Covid-19 crisis, and offer support to adapt and reimagine ways of working for the future. Grants from £10,000-£50,000, Art Fund will consider offering 100% funding. Deadline 12th October.

DCMS – Museums & galleries sector coronavirus bulletin (7th September)

Surveys and results
Vocal Eyes – Survey report: museum re-opening and live-streamed events (8th September)
Results of a survey run in August on what’s important to blind and visually impaired museum visitors.

Audience Agency – Understand the impact of lockdown on the behaviours of different Audience Spectrum groups
Research into how different Audience Spectrum segments have reacted to coronavirus and predicts what they might do next.

Kids in Museums – What SEND families need to get back to museums (3rd September)
Survey results and practical advice on what would give SEND families the confidence to visit museums again.

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