COVID-19: How can you help your community during this time?
Those of us working in the events space have been the first of many who have come to find themselves with more spare time than we might have hoped for in this unusual era.
Amongst the terrible effects of the pandemic, the silver lining for many has been the ability to spend more time with family and have some space away from the office.
But after a few weeks, you might be getting a little cabin fever and thinking about ways you can keep yourself busy and help out those who are struggling at this difficult time.
Here are a few ideas to get your started.
Leverage your connections
You might have a LinkedIn profile with hundreds of contacts that you've met over the years. You might have a warehouse full of equipment gathering dust. Now is the time to look through and think about ways you can support your peers or put that inventory to good use.
Maybe you could join the growing number of event companies who are providing pop-up screening areas with their tents, lighting and generators. There might be a need for extra security in one area and a security person or company you know who's looking for work.
Or, if you're really dedicated, you might reach out to all your contacts and start your own huge network like COVID-19 Mutual Aid - a volunteer group that is dedicated to creating, resourcing and organizing small groups in communities across the UK to support the most vulnerable.
Organize your neighborhood
Speaking of communities, maybe you want to focus your energy more locally.
In this day and age, if you even know the names of your neighbors, you're one of the minority in most major population centres. When we are all confined to our homes, this could prove a problem if something happens and no one is able to check-up on someone.
Consider finding a way for your neighborhood to come together, to ensure that everyone in the area knows who is living alone and may need to be called once a day, or families that have at-risk members such as the elderly or immunosuppressed and may need more support.
By turning your event management skills to the world around you, you can make this difficult time a little easier for the folks who share the same world as you. Check out this example from a local council who are asking for volunteers.
Provide opportunities for connection
Perhaps you pivoted your event into something that was a huge success online. You've wrapped your head around managing big groups online and hosting giveaways or special speakers.
Now you could put that skill to good use by creating meet-ups for those in the industries you work within. Online meet-ups have been fairly popular in the tech space for some time now, so there is no doubt that in this new remote world you could bring them to new ecosystems.
Leverage your LinkedIn network and market it on your own or use a dedicated platform that makes it easy.
Event planning and management is one of the most demanding jobs in the world and being able to keep things running smoothly in a world that is shifting and sliding has never been more valuable. Don't be afraid to put it to good use.
Has your event been impacted by COVID-19? We'd like to hear from you. What challenges are you currently facing? What have you tried that you'd like to share with others?
Ben is a freelance creator who focuses on storytelling and problem-solving. With a background in theatre and specialising in the IT industry, his creative approach lends itself to any challenge. He loves watching, reading and playing stories just as much as he loves creating them.