Dear WakeWell Supporters, Chapter Leaders, and Attendees,

As the spread of COVID-19 continues to be monitored and statements from many of the government and health institutions provide important information, we felt that it was time for WakeWell to comment on the issue in order to update all of our valuable team members. While the culture that we serve, build relationships with, and interact with tends to be healthy, active, and within less-vulnerable categories of the health spectrum, it is important for us to consider the implications of WakeWell activities to the larger community as a whole. Some of the attendees of WakeWell Chapters could be interacting with those in their community with compromised immune systems or the elderly. These have been found to be the most vulnerable to the virus. Our goal as believers in Jesus is always to love and serve those around us well, both in the wake community and beyond.

Our staff and Board of Directors is working diligently to follow the best advice from sound minds in crafting suggestions for the WakeWell 2020 season.  With large events like the 2020 National Wake Conference and many of the seasonal “kick-off events” quickly approaching, we are still considering if/how our organization will safely move forward with these events, and we will continue to keep everyone updated.  In the meantime, we thought it might be helpful to provide some insight for Christian leaders we found particularly helpful from thought leader and journalist, Andy Crouch. Love in the Time of Coronavirus – Andy Crouch

As our on-season ministry season ramps-up, and in the spirit of loving the vulnerable people around us well, we have these suggestions for WakeWell events and activities for the 2020 wake season:

– Consider limiting activities and Chapter meetings to smaller-scale meetings of 30 people or less.

– When possible, show up early help to clean your meeting location, boat, cable dock, shared surfaces, etc.

– Wash your hands before and after activities, and strongly suggest participants do the same.

– Limit any food service to individually wrapped items when possible, and have your team serve them while wearing gloves instead of offering self-service options.

– Consider social distancing options when possible. Give people more space to sit and even consider limiting or stopping handshakes or high fives.

– On-water activities remain a great way to connect, but be mindful of limiting close-proximity interactions to the best of your ability.

– Limit non-essential travel for the coming weeks.

– Show love, grace, and compassion to those that choose to not attend an activity because of precautionary measures.

We are NOT encouraging anyone to put a halt on their “relationship-building”, but we are suggesting that our ministry might need to look slightly different for the short-term future. We understand that these precautions may feel silly or over-the-top to some, but we feel that making small sacrifices like these for a short time in order to love our neighbors well for the long haul is worth our inconvenience. What we choose to do (or not do) in order to protect our community at this moment will greatly impact our witness, testimony, and reach both now and into the future.

We are also presented with a great opportunity!  We have the opportunity at this moment to serve and protect our communities (especially the vulnerable) and share the great hope that we have, even in an age of uncertainty and fear.  We have such great hope in Jesus that we don’t have to be afraid.  Please, go boldly, wisely, and cautiously into the 2020 wake season!

If you have questions or concerns feel free to reach out to Mark at mark@wakewell.org.

With Love,

The WakeWell Team.