The Irish Foreign Minister, Mr Simon Coveney, provided much needed clarity of travel for Santa Claus earlier this week. In confirming the Irish Government’s decision, that Santa Claus is an essential worker, and therefore not constrained by limitations to his movement. The announcement was met with relief and joy by children across the country.
While not necessarily relevant you may say, SAACI calls for this sort of clarity in our own country on how our sector can get back to a full recovery. Our key partner is Government. And while we have worked with our colleagues within and at various levels of Government, we need clarity on when they, as a key stakeholder, contributor, and events client, will be returning to full in-person Business Events.
We will continue to advocate that our recovery will be done in a responsible manner; with all the safety protocols we have shared, developed, and tested at the industry Proof of Concept events.
The announcement last night by President Cyril Ramaphosa, should be seen as an early sign on the challenge we all have faced during this pandemic, this is the challenge of saving lives while also trying to save livelihoods. As SAACI we accept that we are in the final month of 2020 and we are clear about the first quarter being critical for how we activate, execute, and build momentum for 2021.
We are at present gathering data from responses to the Industry Pulse Survey which launched last week. Initial indications are that momentum is still slow, there is still a need for the Private Sector of South Africa to activate. SAACI recognises that this will need more engagement, more building of confidence and more awareness that there remains far greater value in in-person Business Events. In addition, the data also indicates that Hybrid Events may dominate the first quarter, while the operating environment remains fluid as we are currently experiencing.
It is not going to be easy, but we need to keep moving. Your Association, in planning for the first quarter of 2021, and by playing its part will roll-out the following with industry partners:
- Health and Safety information sharing Hybrid Event
- In partnership with the City of Johannesburg, announce dates for the 2020 Congress which we postponed to 2021
- The SAACI Regional Branch Events will be announced
- Announce the Dates for the Youth Conference 2021
- Announce and share the updated SAACI Training Platform
- Share the B2B Business Platforms which we believe will allow for improved transactions between members
- Industry Vacancies for Job Seekers
The above are activities that are aimed at driving Member Benefits.
We are pleased to share an offer for members from the Marriott, a longstanding partner of SAACI, with you all this week. An introduction to the Marriott Bonvoy Business Ready offer is extended to members. For more information, please click https://www.marriottbonvoy.com/BUSINESSREADY. Members can contact Ms Dorcas Dlamini Mbele: Area Director of Sales & Distribution – Sub Saharan Africa email@example.com
The SAACI Team