• Hospitality Industry Steps Up to Help Ukrainian Refugees

     
    POSTED March 19, 2022
     

In early March, Meeting Professionals International released a statement regarding the invasion of Ukraine: 

“In a show of support for the people of Ukraine, MPI will immediately suspend business with all companies in Russia. In addition, any plans to formalize a chapter in Russia will be paused….We remain concerned for the well-being of our community and our MPI members in Russia and Ukraine who were already seeking to climb out of the shadow of this pandemic and are now experiencing these unprecedented challenges.”

Hospitality industry veterans representing PKF hospitality group, The Bench, HotelSwaps, Moodley, Museum Booster and Zoocha also responded to the crisis by forming the group, #HospitalityHelps. #Hospitality Helps is an online booking platform for short-term hotel stays for people fleeing the war in Ukraine. The global initiative has already gained support from many of the world’s leading hospitality groups including Accor, Hilton, IHG and Marriott as well as independent hotels, and is the only booking platform that works across borders and brands.

As of March 17, 2022, 322 hotels have signed up to provide accommodation across 38 countries, almost 7,000 room nights were booked with 33,575 room nights available. Support is provided 24/7 in three languages (Ukrainian, Russian and English) by Ukrainian refugees who were successfully accommodated by #HospitalityHelps.

How are we doing? Pretty good. That was the bottom-line assessment that was shared with the nearly 600 tourism and professionals who attended Visit Seattle’s Annual Outlook Meeting at the Westin Seattle on March 31.

Some highlights from the 2021 study showed:

 

A big part of what imbues a destination with a sense of place and makes it memorable are its small locally owned businesses.  A new partnership between Visit Seattle and Seattle Bank is designed to support these businesses and bring tourism revenue to Seattle’s emerging neighborhoods. The inaugural grant program will invest in 20 local businesses, focusing on establishments owned by women, people of color and LGBTQ+ community members in the easily accessible Central District and Chinatown-International District neighborhoods.

 

Honeycomb Strategies, based in the Colorado mountain town of Crested Butte and with a second location in Portland, Oregon, has been certified as a B Corporation. The women-owned sustainability consulting firm is helping the global event industry create sustainable management systems and reduce its footprint. 

B Corps are for-profit companies that meet the highest standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability and use their profits and growth to positively impact stakeholders and the planet.