Bundaberg Rum’s Raising The Bar initiative has now helped more than 1500 venues right across Australia, with more funds still available to help more.

The $11.5m initiative was designed to help venues recover from the impact of COVID-19 shutdowns and supplies ‘Bear Cares’ packages which include hand sanitiser and dispenser stations, masks, gloves, floor demarcations (stickers) and digital thermometers. It is also supplying outdoor furniture to help venues create ‘Bear Gardens’ for safer open air socialising.

So far the scheme has reached venues right around the country, with Hotel Mackay Venue Manager Dean Fuber saying: “We haven’t had to buy hand sanitiser since we received the support from Bundaberg Rum, saving us hundreds of dollars.”

While in the historic town Richmond in Tasmania, owner of the Richmond Arms Tom Darke said: “We’re very COVID-safe, we have all the right measures in place and we take good hygiene practices very seriously.

“The Raising the Bar items support our business as we go through a lot of sanitiser obviously and a lot of staff still use gloves to clean tables.”

Since the campaign kicked off last September, Raising the Bar has delivered 68,000 litres of hand sanitiser, 1.5 million items of PPE including gloves and face masks, 3000 digital thermometers and tens of thousands of floor demarcations.

Angus McPherson, Managing Director at Bundaberg Rum’s parent company Diageo Australia said: “We all know

Australians want to make the most of the great weather and catch up with their mates at the local pub, bar or club. The Raising the Bar initiative is our way of making socialising this summer as safe as possible.

“Any licence venue can apply for this support and we really encourage all hospitality to get involved because we want to help venues across the country emerge stronger out of this pandemic.”

A recent survey asked how confident Australians felt about returning to their local and revealed a 41 per cent increase in patron confidence, from 58 percent in August 2020 to 82 per cent in January.

The survey also showed that 67 per cent of respondents now feel more confident visiting their local thanks to COVID-safe measures like the Raising the Bar initiative.

Applications remain open for venues to apply for support, just head to the Raising The Bar website for more information.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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