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Coronavirus Updates: Working Together to Keep Our GSNorCal Community Healthy


Updated as of April 13 at 12:00 PM (PST)

Given California’s recent release of new guidelines authorizing low contact youth sports in all counties (State Youth Sports Guidelines) and ongoing improvements in community transmission and vaccination rates, GSNorCal is excited to announce new guidelines for in person single troop meetings and limited outdoor cookie programs for individual girl households. GSNorCal’s new guidelines will be effective on March 1, 2021.


Effective March 1, and subject to compliance with the State Youth Sports Guidelines for low contact youth sports, as well as any applicable county or local health department and school district requirements:

  • Single Troops in ALL counties: May meet in person outdoors
    Single Troops in Orange and Yellow counties: May also meet indoors, provided that the indoor venue meets the State Youth Sport Guidelines for capacity and ventilation
  • Meetings of single Girl Scout troops are comparable to “Low-Contact Sports,” defined in the State Youth Sports Guidelines as: Individual or small group sports where contact within six feet of other participants can be avoided. Examples of low contact sports include no-contact dance, hiking, singles tennis, focusing on small consistent youth groups operating in a controlled environment with responsible adult supervision.

Note: These guidelines expressly exclude community events.


Individual household cookie program activities: Girls participating in the cookie program may sell cookies in person door-to-door and at stationary walk-up or drive-up stands as an individual household activity, provided their parent or caregiver permits and supervises this activity and ensures compliance with the GSNorCal COVID guidelines for the Cookie Program.

COVID-19 Guidance

The California Blueprint for a Safer Economy assigns counties to one of four colored County Risk Levels: Purple, Red, Orange and Yellow. To determine your county’s Risk Level, go to the California Blueprint for a Safer Economy webpage.

County Updates as of 4/13

  • Lake upgraded to orange from red

To view a larger version of the table below, right-click and select "Open image in new tab".


We are in the process of updating the Troop and Service Unit Leader Checklists below and will have those available shortly. 

County Health Department Requirements:

Below are the links to the COVID webpage resources for all 19 counties that make up GSNorCal. We have noted where, as of February 20, 2021, we are aware of county health departments that MAY impose additional restrictions for youth recreational sports. Counties and local schools and school districts continue to adjust guidelines as public health officials learn more about the virus in their communities. Please be sure to check your county’s COVID guidelines, also check with your school, to confirm that youth attending in person school are allowed to participate in youth sports and out-of-school-time activities.

County Website and Additional Information
Alameda County

NOT CLEAR if outdoor youth recreational sports are allowed at this time. The county web page states that: All camps and educational/recreational programs must follow the state cohort guidance for children and youth.

Butte County
Contra Costa County
Del Norte County
Glenn County
Humboldt County
Lake County
Marin County
Mendocino County
Napa County
San Francisco County
San Mateo County
Santa Clara County
Shasta County 
Siskiyou County 
Solano County 
Sonoma County
Tehama County
Trinity County

What GSNorCal Girl Scouts are doing now

  • You may participate in Girl Scout activities as a household: You may plan family days at parks and other outdoor areas with safety protocols in place. We also have some GSNorCal properties open for Family Days at Camp. Families can also go to Girl Scouts at Home to find engaging family-friendly activities and experiences you can do together at home with no supplies or items you might already have on hand. 
  • Girls can Give Joy to thousands of cookie-seeking customers by participating in the 2021 Cookie Program through launching their Digital Cookie online shop and arranging contactless order pick-up sites. Make sure to review our in-person Cookie Program Guidance
  • You may participate in online programs and other hands-on and self-guided activities.
  • Girls can get started on Bronze, Silver, and Gold Awards or other special Girl Scout awards. We’ve seen a big increase in Girl Scouts who are getting a jump start on their award projects. 
  • You may begin planning ahead for your post-COVID troop trip or high-adventure activities. Start by submitting a Trip or High-Adventure Approval Form. By the time you can participate in your adventure, all the details will already be taken care of. 
Fall 2020 Highest Awards Applicants

The deadline for GSNorCal Highest Award applicants (Bronze, Silver, and Gold Award Girl Scouts) whose original deadline was September 30, 2020, has been extended to September 30, 2021.

Updated September 11, 2020

GSNorCal is offering a special extension of one membership year to Girl Scouts whose highest awards were already in progress during the development of COVID-19 and whose original deadlines were September 30, 2020. This applies to 5th grade Juniors, 8th grade Cadettes, and 12th grade Ambassadors already working on their projects who will officially complete their program level on September 30, 2020, and would typically no longer be eligible to earn the Bronze, Silver or Gold Award, respectively.  All highest awards should have been started prior to the original deadlines.  For the Gold Award specifically, new proposals from Girl Scouts who have already completed the 12th grade are not accepted.

Girl Scouts Eligible for Deadline Extension

New Deadline

Award Requirements

Other Changes

Gold Award

12th grade
girls currently in-progress on approved projects with an original deadline of September 30, 2020, or their 18th birthday. New proposals from recent graduates are not accepted.


Same as before, please refer to Gold Award page

Reward Card Conversions for the Gold Award will still be available throughout this extension

Silver Award

Teams containing (or individual) 8th graders with an original deadline of September 30, 2020


Same as before, please refer to Silver Award page

Reward Card Conversions for the Silver Award will still be available throughout this extension

Bronze Award

Teams containing (or individual) 5th graders with an original deadline of September 30, 2020


Same as before, please refer to Bronze Award page

Reward Card Conversions are not currently available at this level


We hope to respond to the needs of our Girl Scouts and communities during this unprecedented situation given the uncertain circumstances we are all working with.   The intention of this deadline extension is to allow Girl Scouts whose progress on existing projects that were halted or slowed by COVID-19 a chance to overcome new obstacles that are outside of their control.

GSNorCal staff, some of whom earned their Highest Awards, recognize that some girls may be facing having to start over completely, and that pivoting in this way takes time. Dealing with uncertainty can also be very challenging, and we know that some girls may be feeling very impacted by the stress of the situation. It is okay to need a break.

We encourage girls first and foremost to take care of themselves and stay safe. Follow the safety guidelines set for your community, and prioritize your health and the health of those around you.

To learn more about how girls can engage with their projects during shelter-in-place, and more specifics about how this will impact girls at each program level, please visit the Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award webpages. We hope that this deadline extension and solutions-oriented framework will help girls move forward with their Highest Awards intentionally and without undue stress.

Please reach out to the Awards team by contacting with further questions or comments.

Thank you for your help in keeping Girl Scouts a safe, fun space for everyone! If you have questions about how novel coronavirus may impact Girl Scout activities, please contact us at or 800-447-4475—we're here for you.