We salute and support our SA Venues
The year 2020 has been written about numerous times by numerous authors, in multitudes of industries and languages with different points of view. Globally the tourism, event and hospitality industries has lost the most - on a grand scale. We are all singing off the same hymn sheet. The job losses and closure of businesses has been heart breaking. However, as in the words of Og Mandino
“ I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars” – hero’s have emerged.
Our local South African Event Industry hero’s are working tirelessly to reunite and ignite the Event and Exhibition Industry and all who work in it or are affiliated to it. The SA Events Council was formed in March 2020 and the ethos of ‘united we stand, divided we fall’ has never been more prevalent. There are 14 Associations that make up the SA Events Council, including the PCO Alliance Network, and collectively we started campaigning with Government to open up the event and exhibition industry in a safe and responsible way. The Events Safety Guidelines were formulated in accordance with the health and safety protocols from the Department of Health, the World Health Organisation and other international event organisations.
The PCO Alliance Network has always set high standards in the event management sector of the hospitality industry and in the past 14 months have grown in prominence and importance in the industry, through active engagement with the SA Events Council and other member bodies. We have hosted our own Proof of Safety Concept Conference and remain engaged in every campaign to re-open events in South Africa such as #lightSAred and #TrustUs.
With this growing voice we would like to highlight the plight of the venues and suppliers who have always so generously supported us and who have suffered exponentially. Beloved hotels, restaurants, event spaces and industry suppliers have retrenched staff and many have had to close down. As the hotels and venues around the country have been gradually opening up for business, the PCO Alliance Network and our industry colleagues have been hosted by various hotel groups and venues to experience the safety protocols they have in place. We have also been introduced to their dynamic and expert hybrid offerings with live streaming now a “must have” and not a “nice to have” component. While sitting in a venue in Sandton, we have engaged with venues and stake holders on a national scale quite seamlessly.
We have had regular zoom updates with our industry colleagues and been introduced to brand new and refurbished venues, have enjoyed excellent presentations of gorgeous hotels, lodges, islands and game reserves. The show must go on and we salute this hard working sector of our industry.
This leads us to a great initiative we are planning for our industry colleagues next week, with our “Event Safety for Dummies” event at the Focus Rooms both onsite and online, on 04 June. For those venues and colleagues who are still unsure of how to navigate the new protocols. Check us out on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for all the details.
Author: Cheryl Norwood-Young
PCO Alliance Network EXCO, PR & HR