Natural disasters are a double-whammy blow to destinations. Not only does the damage need to be repaired, but it must be done while revenues are taking a serious hit. Not surprisingly, any income during this period is extremely helpful. That is where event planners come in. By holding your event in an area recovering from a natural disaster, you are bringing in much-needed business that will help the local economy recover.
After the bushfires blazed through Australia, Federal Minister for Tourism Simon Birmingham stated, “Tourism is the lifeblood of so many communities around Australia and it’s absolutely critical that we help to get people back visiting those communities that rely on tourism.”
Most people’s exposure to disaster zones is limited to what they see on TV. Having attendees travel to a place that is still in the process of recovering, and putting them in contact with locals can allow them to gain a deeper appreciation of the impact of natural disasters. They are likely to return home with a different perspective.
For conferences organized around themes like resilience, overcoming obstacles or recovering from adversity, holding your event in a recovering area might be particularly apropos.
All in all, holding your event in recovering disaster zone is not without its risks. However, the rewards that come from helping a community get back on its feet, exposing attendees to something different and potentially being the first to enjoy a freshly renovated venue make it an avenue worth considering for your future events.