An initiative that has connected event industry resources to support those on the Covid19 frontline from March – June, for the last 14 weeks, across the North of England. Events 4 Covid 19 UK provided two collaborating support groups – one for the North West and one for the North East.
The combined project resulted in the following:
- Benefited over 177,000 individuals across the North of England at time of crisis.
- Assisted over 152 organisations with their Covid 19 response.
- Sourced and distributed over 170k items.
- Saved charities over £65k in equipment hire, services and goods.
- 127 varying requests for help completed providing equipment, infrastructure, PPE, sustenance, and services.
- Provided a lifeline to several organisations.
- Over 212 amazing suppliers donated and contributed towards the initiative.
- 139 days volunteered by the team.
The Covid19 virus had a devastating impact on the events industry and its suppliers in the North West, with many cancelled events, it left thousands of suppliers, service providers and freelancers out of work. As a result, a network of event organisers and suppliers, large and small, in the North West was created to pool resources and work together. Assisting with requests from the NHS, local government, charities and other organisations that needed vital support during the pandemic, Events 4 Covid 19 North West supported the community in the fight against the virus.
Core projects that Events 4 Covid 19 team carried out across the North West included, SONGS 4 SMILES, which provided morale boosting outdoor entertainment for care homes and assisted living premises; FUEL 4 THE FRONTLINE hand delivered bespoke care packages to support the frontline workers during their long shifts, and HAVENS 4 HEROES transformed existing spaces into mindful and stimulating sanctuaries for frontline workers.
These well received projects, delivered the following across the North West:
SONGS 4 SMILES resulted in performances at 37 care homes, assisted living residences, retirement homes and specialist care homes. Musicians entertained over 1450 residents and carers across the North West, including Manchester city centre, Salford, Fallowfield, Whalley Range, Chorlton, Didsbury, Withington, Altrincham, Gatley, Cheadle Hulme, Stockport, Davenport, Bramhall, Rochdale, Oldham, Bury Bolton, Wigan, Leigh, Warrington, Wirral, Lytham St Annes, Blackpool.
A resident from Rylands retirement home, Chorlton commented: “People were stopping outside, children were dancing, mums were putting them on the walls so they could see what was going on, the postman was dancing across the road, and nearly every window in the care home building had a resident waiving and singing along, windows were open, they were clapping, it was really really good.”
Over 34 organisations benefited from a 100k of sourced and donated items, thanks to FUEL 4 THE FRONTLINE. Donations were made to hospitals, ambulances, care homes, local government, homelessness organisations, emergency food charities and food banks to name a few.
Charities that benefited included, Eat Well MCR, Open Kitchen Manchester, Reach Out to the Community, FC United of Manchester, Manchester Homelessness Partnership, and Booth Centre. FUEL 4 THE FRONTLINE also provided to local city councils and to public health sector organisations including, North Manchester General Hospital, Aintree University Hospital, Warrington Hospital, Stepping Hill Hospital, Wigan Hospital, Southport & Ormskirk Hospital, Lancashire Women’s and Newborn Centre, North Manchester General Hospital, North West Ambulance Service stations (Liverpool, Manchester, Wigan and Leigh, Bury, Tameside, Ashton Under Lyne, Rochdale).
A spokesperson from Open Kitchen MCR, Manchester commented: “Thank you for all the help and support we have received from Events 4 Covid 19, your assistance and the support you have given us helped us feed 119,000 vulnerable people and the numbers are still growing, we really couldn’t have done that without you”
The HAVENS 4 HEROES initiative created sanctuaries at Stepping Hill Hospital, North Manchester General Hospital, Warrington Hospital, benefiting a total of 800 staff.Commenting on behalf of Stepping Hill Hospital, Stockport, Kathryn Glass (Staff Governor) said: “The Sanctuary has brought all staff together, as a team, for the first time, removing all ranks and titles. It lifted the heavy atmosphere and brought light into the hospital and lifted everyone’s spirits. This has had an important impact in mental resilience during this pandemic.”
The Events 4 Covid19 group is made of over 200 event industry suppliers who have access to generators, catering equipment, furniture, comms equipment, tents and marquees, outdoor and indoor audio equipment, outdoor and indoor lighting, transport, staging equipment, medical and ambulances, heating equipment, venue dressing and many other items. The group also provided services including security, cleaning, medical, AV engineers, traffic management, project management, networks of freelancers, transportation and volunteer management as well as many other services during the pandemic. The initiative was run by 23 volunteers; managing all the projects and requests coming in every day.
Nelson Beaumont-Laurencia of CityCo and Co-founder and Events for Covid 19 said: “What we have been able to achieve in the last few months is unbelievable – we are very thankful to everyone that has been involved, as without them this wouldn’t have been possible. This is a great example of the events industry coming together in a moment of crisis to assist the organisations that needed it the most. We have created an invaluable supporting network and community through this, and even though Events 4 Covid 19 concludes, we will still remain for any crisis support in the future.”
Events 4 Covid 19 was initiated in March by Nelson Beaumont-Laurencia of CityCo and Robert Masterson of Mustard Media after being inspired by Portuguese industry colleagues who they have now established an alliance with. At the start, they requested for colleagues to join the aid movement by replicating the scheme in other areas of the UK, which is when Matt Long of New Citizens and Peter Shorten of Immersive Precision joined by starting the initiative in the North East.