Simon Thewlis of Event Pty Ltd is one of the founders of Save Victorian Events, an advocacy group set up to give a voice to business events in Victoria and those who work within it. Following the easing of restrictions in Melbourne and the government’s announcement of a Recovery Roadmap, Simon explains why the battle is only half done and the reasons that Save Victorian Events and Victorian event professionals need to keep pushing.
It has been a very long, hard and frustrating road for Victoria’s event industry to get to the point where we are today – a Roadmap out of this crisis. It’s not perfect, but the main thing is that there is one now and we know where we stand. We can start planning.
The key thing now is to secure financial support to ensure that people and businesses in the event industry can survive until events are properly back up & running again. We know that for many this won’t be until at least early 2022 – such are the lead times for many events.
The Federal Government Disaster Payments and the Victorian Government’s Business CAP grants are both due to end shortly but we desperately need these payments to continue.
Contact your local MP
We know that governments are aware of the financial situation in the event industry but we now need them to act. It’s always a good day to ring your local state and federal MPs about this. Certainly, nearly all Victorian MPs are aware of the situation but phones calls from constituents do help push things along. This link will quickly bring up the details of your local state (Australia wide) and federal MPs so you can give them a call: https://savevictorianevents.good.do/CallMPs/CallMPs/
Building back confidence
Many key parts of our industry, such as the technical side, have lost a huge amount of talent. So, it’s a long road ahead for our industry to rebuild, just as it will be for many of our individual businesses.
The COVID pandemic has had a profound impact on the whole community over the last 18 months. It’s taken a huge toll on people, organisations and communities.
We need to bring people back together again. We need to share a vision for our future. We need to start rebuilding confidence, optimism and energy – community by community, organisation by organisation, region by region and sector by sector.
This is what events are great at doing.
An Event Led Recovery
We need governments to start planning today for an event led recovery and put real money in to getting events started again – from the community events right up to business events and public events, just as we outlined in our Vision and Strategy report.
Victoria should be having an Event Led Recovery and Australia should be having an Event Led Recovery.