FootballFix and Coronavirus (Covid-19) Update

Updated as at 23rd March 2020

As at 23rd March 2020, all FootballFix activity has been suspended until further notice.

Below is the latest status in detail from FootballFix. Scroll down for further updates in chronological order.

Update as at 23rd March 2020

Important update: FootballFix suspends all activity, leagues, coaching and competitions effective immediately

After the nation-wide updates announced on Saturday 21st March 2020, FootballFix held an emergency meeting at the first possible opportunity on Monday 23rd March 2020. Following this meeting, FootballFix has made the decision to suspend all activity, leagues, coaching and competitions effective immediately.

We highly commend our government and health authorities for taking the measures they have in keeping New Zealander’s safe. As always, FootballFix puts the health and safety of its customers, employees and community first. To date, we have been heeding closely the guidance from local health authorities and advisors.

Some of our leagues were coming into “finals week” – we would like to resume and play all finals for these leagues, where applicable, as soon as possible. Once the “all clear” has been given by health authorities, we will contact teams who are eligible for final play-off matches and advise them how these games will be played.

Teams who have registered for our Autumn season will be kept registered for their chosen competitions once we resume. We are committed to playing the Autumn season and will provide updates regarding potential start dates as we receive information from the government. As a show of goodwill, we are happy to refund any registrations to teams who wish to withdraw from the Autumn season.

This is an extremely fast-moving global event, and we sincerely thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate these extraordinary times. We implore all of you to please look out for one another and approach every situation with care and empathy. We are all in this together – young and old, families and individuals, businesses and employees, even us footballers. Times like these may be unnerving, but they also give us all an opportunity to come together, help each other, and support each other. FootballFix is proud to have been bringing you football on a daily basis for the last 9 years and hopefully many more to come.

We thank you for your sustained support and understanding. We hope to see you all again very soon! Please keep an eye out for future updates.

Stay safe,
The Team at FootballFix

Update as at 22nd March 2020

As per the COVID-19 Alert System announced yesterday, FootballFix is working on a contigency plan for each level and is aware of the concerns of our loyal community. Please bare with us as we work through this fast-paced, ever-evolving situation.

Currently we are at Level 2: Reduce
Restaurants, cafes, bars, grocery stores, schools are all still in full operation. FootballFix competitions are currently still active, but we are following the situation extremely closely and have contingency plans in place.

At Level 3, where the New Zealand Government and health authorities deem all gatherings and non-essential businesses unsafe, FootballFix will halt all competitions and public operations.

We appreciate that some of our community wish to err on the side of caution. We fully understand should you wish to discontinue playing, please just let your Venue Manager know. Any teams that wish to withdraw from the Autumun season, we are happy to process a full refund as a measure of goodwill.

We would like to assure our customers and community that we will make decisions based on the advice and guidance we are receiving from our government and health authorities.

Please continue to check this page and our Facebook pages for regular updates.

Update as at 21st March 2020

On Saturday 21st March 2020, the New Zealand Government has released an Alert System consisting of 4 Levels. As at today, we are at Level 2. See the COVID-19 Alert Levels Table here.

See the official updates from covid19.govt.nz here

What does this mean for FootballFix?

  • “Mass gatherings” are restricted – outdoor gatherings of more than 500 people, and indoor gatherings of more than 100 people are banned.
  • People over 70 years of age, people who have compromised immunity or people who have underlying respiratory conditions should stay at home.
  • As mentioned earlier, any player who is feeling even the slightest bit unwell should self-isolate and not attend our competitions.
  • No handshaking at any of our venues, with higher care given to hygiene practices as well.
  • All venues have a COVID-19 instructional information on the news board or touchscreen.
  • Any teams wishing to discontinue playing are free to do so, and any teams registered for the Autumn season who wish to withdraw may request a full refund.

Please continue reading below updates, as all previous precautions and measures taken by FootballFix still apply in addition to the above.

All competitions are currently active.

Update as at 19th March 2020

The health, safety and wellbeing of our players, teams, community and staff is our highest priority. Due to the growing global concerns around coronavirus (Covid-19), we wish to ensure our community remains up-to-date.

We have been closely monitoring all of the latest guidelines issued by the New Zealand Ministry of Health and will continue to follow their advice and take the appropriate steps to help keep our customers safe.

At this point in time, our competitions will continue to run as normal. We understand that this is an ever-evolving situation. We await to hear from official health authorities on recommendations that may affect us and our community, but until that time all games will go ahead as planned.

The key recommendation we are heeding right now is related to the number of people allowed at a mass gathering. The most people we have at any given time at any one venue is between 15-100 people depending on the venue and number of fields, which is well below the guidelines currently set out by the New Zealand Ministry of Health (only events greater than 500 people are being cancelled). Source: NZ Ministry of Health

We ask that all players and people at our venues follow these guidelines:

  • If you or any of your teammates have flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath, then you should stay away from our venues and competitions.
  • We recommend that nobody shakes hands before or after the game.
  • Please ensure that you wash your hands regularly and after the game.

Click here for the latest update from the Ministry of Health

We fully understand that there are concerns. If you decide your team does not want to participate in the upcoming Autumn season, that is absolutely fine and we fully understand. As a show of goodwill, we are happy to issue a full refund of any payments that have been made as long as your request is made before the season has started.

We will continue to monitor the situation closely. Should anything develop officially from the Ministry of Health, we will take the appropriate measures in order to keep everyone as safe as possible and communicate any changes with our communities.

For any future updates, please check our website or social media pages as an official source of information regarding our leagues and competitions.

About FootballFix
FootballFix by SportSocial provides community-level social football competitions – leagues, tournaments, and corporate events – all over the Auckland region. SportSocial is Aotearoa’s favourite social sports organisers – from football and netball to touch rugby and apparel. For more information, visit footballfix.co.nz or sportsocial.co.nz.

No handshaking, and please try and reduce any hand or skin contact where possible. Please try and socially distance yourself from others at the venue until your game is about to start. Please leave the venue as soon as your match finishes.

Healthy players only. If you are feeling even the slightest unwell, are a non-player or supporter, are over 70 years of age, or have a compromised immune system, please do not attend our venues at all.

We are monitoring the situation closely, and will make decisions based on official advice. We understand if you wish to discontinue playing, just please let us know in advance. We will refund all Autumn registrations upon request.

Update as at 18th March 2020

We are aware of the statement made today by New Zealand Football and other nationally organized sporting codes. We would like to clarify that FootballFix is not affiliated with New Zealand Football or any of its regional federations in any way. FootballFix will continue to monitor the situation and closely and follow the advice of official health authorities (i.e. Ministry of Health, New Zealand Government).

Update as at 17th March 2020

NZ Herald: “Play on’: New Zealand health experts say sport should continue across country”

Despite cancellations and suspensions from national and international sporting bodies, the spread of Covid-19 in domestic and community sport is not a huge risk yet, and sport should remain a part of the community while it can.

University of Otago’s Doctor Ayesha Verrall is an expert in infectious diseases and she says now is not the time to halt sport at any level.

Read this full article here

Sourced from NZ Herald

Despite cancellations and suspensions from national and international sporting bodies, the spread of Covid-19 in domestic and community sport is not a huge risk yet, and sport should remain a part of the community while it can.

University of Otago’s Doctor Ayesha Verrall is an expert in infectious diseases and she says now is not the time to halt sport at any level.

Verrall says continuity is the best call for now, as the virus could have a further reach in the coming months and Kiwis may then not have the choice to continue organised sport at all.

“When we are at this stage, no we don’t need to cancel. We just need to follow the direction from the Government like we are. These measures will change as the number of cases and transmissions in our community changes.”

The current Government advice is to cancel or postpone events that have crowds of 500 people or more. Meaning domestic matches such as Super Rugby, Football’s A-League and the Rugby League’s NRL have to adapt.

These competitions required international travel, but Verrall says small-scale community sport and even domestic matches should continue – provided the crowds are limited.

“So right now there’s only limits on groups over 500 people. We should go play club rugby if it’s only getting 100 people together. Live your life to the fullest within the rules. “Go to the gym, wash your hands when you go in, wipe down your equipment and while you’re there don’t touch your face, then wash when you leave.”

Verrall says “our new normal” is that Covid-19 is out there and it means sporting bodies may need to adjust plans quickly as the virus develops.

But for now, play on.

“Imagine if we did have a little outbreak, or restrictions later on in the year? we would have wished we did all our normal stuff in March and April.”

Auckland University’s professor Shaun Hendy specialises in the spread of virus and disease. He echoed it was important to keep the status quo going in community and domestic sport, for the sake of staying connected.

“At the moment my recommendation would be no [don’t cancel]. People obviously have to take precautions and be sensible. If you’ve got a cold or sore throat don’t go play sport or don’t turn up to the game. The risk drops as the number of people drops. So I think for local school sport at the moment, people should still be doing that, while we can.”

He added keeping that sense of community is useful and healthy, provided people take the right precautions.

“We are in this for the long haul, you know it’s not something that’s going to go away in a few weeks, we are talking months to a year.”

Update as at 16th March 2020

As at March 16th, the NZ Ministry of Health is banning gatherings of 500 or more and encourage those who are unwell to self-isolate, with strong recommendations for all those who are healthy to maintain good hygiene practices. They are still encouraging the healthy public to continue to work and attend school as usual.

Read this full update here

Update as at 14th March 2020

NZ Ministry of Health has made the following recommendations to all attending gatherings of any size in order to minimize personal risk:

The most important thing to do is practice good hygiene. This means:

  • Covering coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or coughing/sneezing into your elbow;
  • Disposing of used tissues appropriately in a bin;
  • Washing hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water and drying them thoroughly, or using hand sanitizer:
    • before eating or handling food
    • after using the toilet
    • after coughing, sneezing, blowing your nose or wiping children’s noses
    • after touching public surfaces
  • Trying to keep 2 metres away from people who are unwell;
  • Limiting alcohol and drug use (as this may affect your ability to adequately follow the advice above).

The measures above are especially important for people who have existing health conditions, such as those with diabetes, renal failure, chronic lung disease or compromised immune systems.

Read this full update here

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