COVID-19 Crisis Support
During these challenging times, we are endeavouring to keep our readers up-to-date with the very latest news, resources and offers of support in relation to the current global COVID-19 pandemic. We will be adding to this page regularly as the situation progresses. If you are aware of any industry-relevant information that you think would be useful to share, please let us know via firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Last Updated : 09:07 15-12-2020]
We Make Events
The #WeMakeEvents campaign, started by PLASA, has turned into a global movement run by an industry collective comprising trade bodies, businesses and individuals. The campaign now includes a merchandise shop, with funds going to industry charity Backup and the running of the campaign. Read about the #WeMakeEvents Global Day of Action and Stand As One events in LSi.
One Industry One Voice
One Voice is an industry taskforce formed by several prominent live events industry campaigns and trade bodies in a bid to better communicate the demands of the UK events industry to the government.
Make It Blue
Make It Blue is a mental health-focused organisation in support of industry colleagues in need.
If you have unused computer resources, consider joining Folding@Home, a distributed computing scheme for disease research.
Edinburgh-based event company 21CC Group Ltd's online campaign #ThinkOthers aims to connect those who need help with those who can offer help as a result of the effects of COVID-19.
UK Live Event Freelancer's Forum is a Facebook group set up to bring this unique workforce together during this challenging time.
Light It In Red
Co-ordinating and encouraging the illumination of key buildings and landmarks in 'emergency red' to highlight the critical state of the live events industry, Light It In Red regularly partners with #WeMakeEvents for its national and international days of action.
Freelancers Make Theatre Work
An inclusive community for the 200,000+ self-employed and freelance workers from all areas of theatre, opera, dance and live performance, who make up 70% of the UK theatre workforce.
The Show Must Go On
A range of merchandise raising funds and awareness for people working within the theatre industry at their time of need during the current UK theatre shutdown. Run by the Theatre Support Fund.
With the reintroduction of stricter restrictions across the world this winter, mental health problems are becoming more prevalent. The ratio of people experiencing mental health problems is one in four, but in the arts, it is said to be one in three.
Samaritans: 116 123
Samaritans (Welsh): 0808 164 0123
Mind: 0300 123 3393
SANEline: 0300 304 7000
Mental Health Foundation
The foundation has issued advice on looking after your mental health during the ongoing crisis. Visit: www.mentalhealth.org.uk
Mental Health First Aid England
Mental health training offered both online and face-to-face. Visit: www.mhfaengland.org
UK-based charity dedicated to ensuring that nobody in the UK music industry is left to suffer alone with mental or emotional health issues or addiction. Call the helpline on 0800 030 6789 for a non-judgemental and confidential listening ear service, or visit www.musicsupport.org for more resources, including access to the Thrive app (see below).
The mobile app that helps prevent and manage stress, anxiety and related conditions. Visit: www.nhs.uk/apps-library/thrive
Behind the Scenes Mental Health Screening (North America)
US-based readers can visit www.btshelp.org/mentalhealth for support from Behind the Scenes.
The Theatre Helpline
A free confidential phone and email service for people working in theatre. Visit: www.theatrehelpline.org
A mental health resource for actors, their colleagues and carers. Visit: www.playingsane.org
Business Support Finder - A UK government utility that helps narrow down the funding options for you. Suitable for employers and the self-employed, including sole traders and limited company directors.
Additional Restrictions Grant - Supports businesses not covered by other grant schemes or where additional funding is needed. Businesses in the events sector are now eligible.
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme - The scheme helps small- and medium-sized businesses to access loans and other kinds of finance up to £5m. The scheme is open until 31 January 2021. Large companies should apply for the Large Business Interruption Scheme.
Bounce Back Loan - The scheme helps small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 and up to 25% of their turnover. The maximum loan available is £50,000.
Future Fund - Convertible loans between £125,000 and £5m for "innovative companies" facing financing difficulties.
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme - The SEISS has been extended and will provide two further grants - for November 2020 to January 2021 and February 2021 to April 2021.
Citizens Advice - Offering advice to anyone on a low income or struggling with living costs.
Backup Hardship Fund - Financial assistance for crew and people working in the technical supply chain.
The COVID-19 Crew Relief Fund - Administered by Stagehand, the Production Services Association (PSA) Welfare and Benevolent Fund, the COVID-19 Crew Relief Fund is invested in supporting live music and events professionals affected by COVID-19 restrictions.
Crew Nation - Live Nation's charitable fund to help support concert crews.
Theatre Artists Fund - Theatre professionals in need of urgent and critical financial support can apply for the Theatre Artists Fund. If eligible, applicants can be considered for a one-off emergency grant of £1,000, which they can use towards living costs.
We have collated a list of training resources made available by the industry for the industry during this time of crisis that give those with unexpected down-time the opportunity to focus and learn. Contact email@example.com or write to us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and we will include your training initiatives below . . .
ADJ is launching a series of Stay Connected video broadcasts with educational content and product overviews. Each session will be broadcast live on Facebook and viewers can type their questions directly to the product specialists on camera. All recorded episodes can be viewed on ADJ's YouTube channel.
ARRI has launched an 11-part online course for all levels of lighting and video professionals. Offered through ARRI Academy, Lighting Systems Control with Richard Cadena serves as a guide to get you up and running with digital lighting control, using DMX, RDM, Wireless DMX, and ethernet-based networks. Cadena, LSi's technical editor and columnist, leads the course.
LED lighting solutions manufacturer Astera is offering an online resource of webinars through its Astera Academy. Sessions are dedicated to the company's hardware and software offerings. Visitors can explore the ins and outs of the AsteraApp as well as various lighting fixtures. Each webinar is streaming twice a day and lasts 30-60 minutes.
Avolites regularly carries out Ai and Titan online training and organises a host of other activities for its followers and users on Facebook.
The ChamSys Training Academy offers various resources covering the manufacturer's range of products, including free one-to-one sessions with programmers during business hours. Also offered are daily webinars conducted by LDs and programmers, an expanded menu of video tutorials; and free MagicQ and QuickQ sessions. Live MagicQ sessions will stream every Tuesday at 11am EST (4pm BST).
Chauvet Professional has launched its Thursday Tech Talk series. Streamed every Thursday at 2pm EST (7pm GMT) on Facebook Live, Instagram Live, YouTube Live and LinkedIn Live, the series cover a wide-range of lighting and video wall subjects. The recorded sessions will also be available anytime via www.chauvetprofessional.com/training.
Elation Professional's Elation Hour weekly webinars are now available on demand from the lighting manufacturer's website. The series is hosted by Elation's John Dunn and Matthias Hinrichs and feature discussions on the ins and outs of broadcast lighting, lighting for festivals and outdoor events, and more.
ETC's entire catalogue of LearningStage classes are available online from the manufacturer's website.
New episodes of GLP's10 Out of 10 series of video interviews with lighting designers will be released every Wednesday on the company's YouTube channel. Each 15-minute episode will feature an LD answering the same set of questions, making for an "informative, partly inspirational, and partly irreverent and amusing" resource.
Harman Professional Solutions Solutions has extended its e-learning programme, offered free in conjunction with Harman Pro University. The company has added 12 free Live Workshops which will take place throughout August and feautre lighting or audio experts who have worked with artists including 3 Doors Down, Bob Seger, Guns N' Roses, Gwen Stefani, Iron Maiden and many more. Details HERE.
MA Lighting's e-learning platform MA University is also available globally.
Madrix' YouTube channel now features recordings of the company's livestream videos broadcast earlier this year. The sessions are dedicated to Madrix' range of lighting control solutions. These include an overview of Madrix Radar, the RDM tool for automatic device monitoring, and the latest software updates in Madrix 5.
Obsidian Control Systems has collected its Onyx 101 webinars and advanced training videos for on-demand viewing on its YouTube channel.
Lighting control manufacturer Zero 88 has ramped up its available online consultations and training opportunities, releasing a schedule of 42 Zoom training sessions each month, which will run for as long as the crisis lasts. Sessions will cover a wide range of topics related to Zero's award-winning FLX and FLX S series of lighting consoles. For full details, visit zero88.com.
Adamson Systems Engineering has launched The Adamson Education Webinar Series covering topics relevant to Adamson products, technologies and applications, as well as the wider live sound and integration industries. All past sessions are available on the company's Vimeo page.
Audac has extended its online Dante webinar series into the summer, whilst all past sessions are archived on its website. The company's Dante Certification is also running during August. Find out more HERE.
Audinate has extended its online Dante webinar series, offering over 25 free online learning opportunities this month. Topics include Dante Design and Case Studies, Dante Domain Manager, Dante Certification Programme, plus previous webinar recordings. Register HERE.
Audio-Technica has highlighted some of its useful online resources, including blog posts and tutorials educating on best practices and solutions for content creation, live-streaming and developing a home set-up. Available on YouTube, the series includes Basic Audio Techniques for Video, a 13-part series covering the basics of hand-held and lavalier mics, wireless systems, boom mics, and more.
Avid is providing free 90-day software licences for students affected by campus closures. If your university is an Avid Learning Partner, you should have already received instructions from the ALP team directly. Otherwise, you can request a code HERE.
DPA Microphones has released various online training webinars focused on products and techniques. The company is hosting interviews with industry professionals including Whit Norris, Brad Maddox and Eddie Caipo on multiple streaming platforms; there will also be live streamed performances by industry-leading musicians, including symphony and orchestra engineer Mary Mazurek.
DPA is also releasing new Mic University articles, featuring tips for stay-at-home content providers and a cleaning guide that provides ways to ensure proper mic hygiene – these can be found here
Webinars and tutorials dedicated to various pro audio and lighting topics are shared regularly on the public Facebook group of DWR Distribution, available HERE.
Harman Professional Solutions Solutions has extended its e-learning programme into August – for the latest sessions available for registration, click HERE.
All past and present K-array Webinar Series are available HERE.
L-Acoustics is hosting daily webinars covering system design, system calibration, measurement and more. Application engineers are always on-hand to answer any questions live in a range of languages including English, French, German and Spanish. The schedule of upcoming webinars can be found HERE. Meanwhile, past webinars can be viewed HERE.
The company has also made its entire catalogue of AES scientific articles available for download free of charge. See our news story for subject matters and info on how to access the documents.
Lectrosonics has produced Wireless Side Chats, a video series dedicated to wireless audio. Hosted by the Karl Winkler, the series covers the history of wireless equipment; the seven most common wireless microphone problems; Lectrosonics Wireless Designer software; and best practices when using wireless.
Martin Audio has listed all its recorded webinars on its website. Topics are industry and product-related and range from discussions on festival sound to product overviews of the company's loudspeaker series.
After the "overwhelming response" to its daily offering, Meyer Sound has launched an ongoing webinar programme. The courses will offer "a natural progression of subject matter". Attendees can also choose from a separate 'à la carte' menu to create on-demand programming, determined via a weekly poll through the Meyer Sound Users Community Facebook group. Special guests, including Meyer Sound CEO, John Meyer, will be invited to join and lead some of the discussions. The webinars are archived on YouTube.
In partnership with the Sennheiser SoundAcademy, Neumann will offer webinars on the basics of microphone technology. Released over the coming weeks, there will be three one-hour sessions focused on the key aspects of Neumann studio microphones. Interested parties can register HERE.
Out Board, the company behind the TiMax spatial sound technology, has announced a series of online training sessions with TiMax specialists in the UK and USA. Sessions are open to all sound designers, sound engineers and production sound techs worldwide on a first-come, first-served basis. Simply register to download TiMax SoundHub software (Mac or Windows) from the website and enter "1on1" into the About You section. Alternatively contact Out Board direct on firstname.lastname@example.org
Italian loudspeaker manufacturer Outline has launched a webinar series dedicated to Newton, the FPGA processor technology, and OpenArray, the 3D simulation software. Register HERE.
Powersoft, the Italian amplification specialist, has released a series of online tutorials about the T Series and Mezzo. The group sessions are divided by region and available in English and Spanish. Visit this link to book your place.
Ravenna Ravenna is increasing its educational output and is staging a series of educational webinars with partners, all of which are being archived HERE.
RCF has announced a series of webinars focusing on RCF Technologies and best practices in live sound and installed audio. Live-streamed via RCF's website, the seminar programme will be presented by RCF specialists in multiple languages. See all sessions and details on how to register HERE.
Shure is hosting Kickstart 2021, a series of virtual events where guests will provide advice and support on several key topics in a relaxed environment. The sessions will run as follows: 7 January - Finance; 14 January - Mental Wellbeing; 21 January - Networking; and 28 January - Getting Work-Ready. Register HERE.
Yamaha has highlighted some of its online training videos for audio professionals. Available from Yamaha's YouTube channel, these include:
Teachers' Tips video series
Rivage PM feature Vlog
MRX7-D signal processor training videos
How To Mix Live Music video series
Absen America has announced further Absen Certified Engineers (ACE) courses, to take place during August. Register HERE.
Free one-hour BlackTrax webinars are available from the CAST Software website. There is also an option for private training sessions, subject to trainer availability. For more details, visit: blacktrax.cast-soft.com/training
WYSIWIG Essentials seminar series by CAST are also available from the company's website.
Meanwhile, WYSIWYG tutorials can also be found on the YouTube channel of LSi columnist James Simpson
Green Hippo is offering Hippotizr training through its website, where you can register for upcoming sessions or express your interest in others that are yet to be scheduled. Access all this HERE
Video effects software company Notch has launched a web portal for online courses. Available HERE, the page lists video tutorials and past streams with instructor-led courses, as well as an option to request private training.
PSCo, UK distributor for Absen, is presenting a webinar dedicated to the Chinese LED solutions manufacturer's range of rental and staging panels. The company is updating its schedule weekly, with Absen America having already announced three introductory sessions on LED technology, to take place on 27 April, 30 April, and 6 May. See how to register HERE.
Vectorworks has also extended its online seminars drive into the summer, with free sessions scheduled during August on several languages. See all upcoming events HERE.
RIGGING / STAGING
Area Four Industries' A4.tv video channel hosts a catalogue of training videos.
TAIT has released free iQ training videos, tailored to users of all levels of entertainment automation. The tutorials detail how to operate machines using a variety of methods, add windows to workspaces, create time saving presets, programme a show using various cue lines and organisational helpers, as well as stop and restart cues.
The PLASA-initiated #WeMakeEvents campaign is gathering pace as live events industry professionals are set to unite in a number of protest activities to raise awareness of the plight of the sector and its struggling supply chain. Scheduled for 11 August, the action will include social media drives as well as outdoor events, with other specific activities occurring on the day. Visit www.plasa.org/we-make-events or use #WeMakeEvents on social media to join in the action.
PLASA is also in constant contact with its members, responding to questions and concerns and sending daily emails with useful information and support guidelines. The association has also complied a list of useful resources, available at www.plasa.org
The Association has created closed Facebook and LinkedIn groups for its members to remain connected and share information throughout the coronavirus crisis.
The Production Services Association (PSA) has consulted some of the top professionals in the concert touring circuit to come up with a guidance on COVID-19 risk management for the sector. The document, available HERE, outlines how touring productions can better align with suppliers, venues and promoters to assist risk management relating to COVID-19 transmission. You can offer your feedback HERE.
PERG, the Production Equipment Rental Group, has released a draft of its return-to-work guidance for the safe resumption of camera and lighting rental services. The objective is to provide a unified set of industry-wide guidelines that address health and safety challenges related to the rental of production equipment and ensure that any risks to production companies, studios, and customers are minimised. The paper is up for review until 9 June - Download the draft of the guidelines, public review form, and public review instructions HERE.
The Association of Lighting Designers (ALD) has compiled a Coronavirus Financial Survival Guide which can be found HERE.
Freelancers Make Theatre Work, a freelance community for freelancers who work in the performing arts sector lists valuable information resources and advice.
BECTU, the Broadcasting, Entertainment, Communications and Theatre Union, has also launched a coronavirus-related Q&A section.
SOLT / UK THEATRES have created a web portal with a collection of useful resources. The two bodies have also launched a webinar page, covering topics spanning financial and business planning, leadership and people management, and health, safety and wellbeing. You can access this resource HERE.
The Music Managers Forum (MMF) are gathering evidence on the impact COVID-19 has on the music makers and their representatives via an online survey.
Show Makers Symposium is beginning a series of free online webinars and podcasts to share and discuss various resources available to those challenged by the pandemic. The webinars can be accessed via registration HERE.
The Association of Independent Music (AIM) has launched a support fund aimed at contractors and freelance workers who do not qualify for other hardship funds on offer. The fund opens with £500,000 committed by AIM and its members, with the aim to distribute £1,000 to each of 1,000 workers within two months. Click HERE for the full story.
A fleet of manufacturers and distributors have issued statements regarding their status and business practices during the outbreak . . .
---------- LATEST ----------
From 11 May Nexo will gradually begin restarting its manufacturing operations in Plailly and Saint-Pierre-de-Côle, France. The return to normal service, in accordance with the guidelines of the French authorities, will involve adjusted working hours to meet health and safety protocols, and the current demand. Most of the company's key suppliers have now resumed their own activity. Read the full story HERE.
In Windhoek, Namibia, the management of technical production and rental company dB Audio are talking to officials and bureaucrats in an attempt to get the industry recognised as a "most affected" sector - and be eligible for financial assistance from the government. Get the full story HERE.
LED lighting manufacturer Astera has temporarily repurposed its 10,000sq.m factory in Shenzhen to assist with the delivery of essential personal protective equipment (PPE). Astera's CEO Norbert Ernst feels that having the factory working in this capacity will assist a rapid return to full LED lighting manufacture when conventional business starts to resume. Read the full story HERE.
Guangzhou-based lighting manufacturer PR Lighting has reportedly resumed operation after China is starting to lift some of the heavy restrictions it had imposed to tackle the Covid-19 outbreak. "PR Lighting is back running 100% as normal," confirmed company president, Dave Liang. "Our technical and marketing departments are fully operational, and production and shipment are back on schedule. We would like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding during these unprecedented times."
Spain's DAS Audio continues to suspend its operations as the country extended its lockdown into April. "Two weeks ago, at DAS Audio headquarters, we started to take all of the necessary steps against Covid-19 following government recommendations. However, due to the latest measures adopted by the Spanish, we inform you that from 30 March we will continue to work remotely from our homes to support you when you need us. Our operations in Spain are suspended effective immediately from 30 March until 14 April," said the company in a statement.
Clair Global has partnered with Mountain Productions, Inc. to integrate turnkey solutions and custom design into Mountain's temporary hospitals and disaster relief centres. Ricky Rose, CEO at Mountain Productions, comments: "The combined efforts of the companies help to ensure emergency personnel can continue uninterrupted operations while working in temporary or improvised locations. Clair's services include LAN/Wi-Fi-based connectivity, pre-built mobile office set-ups, network security and monitoring, and push-to-talk mobile voice communication."
UK loudspeaker manufacturer EM Acoustics will close its factory and suspend day-to-day business from 6pm on Friday, 27 March. "Without wanting to cast aside the value of our country's economy, the health and wellbeing of our staff and customers has to take priority, as well as a social responsibility to do our part to halt the spread of the virus in these difficult times," says the company in a statement. "Whilst the factory is closed and we will not be despatching any orders after Friday, our phone lines are diverted and emails will still be monitored so urgent communication can still get through to us - both for commercial matters and for technical support. We will endeavour to reopen the factory as soon as possible, once it is deemed safe to do."
As Italy's coronavirus lockdown continues, AEB Industriale - the owner of dBTechnologies - has also suspended its production activities. The organisation's support staff can be reached via phone or email. The statement is available in full here.
Barcelona's Amate Audio has found itself in a similar situation, with disruption to the supply chain and an extension to Spain's lockdown forcing the company to temporary cease production. "We are however continuing to supply our customers' orders from stock, across our international distributor network, and are maintaining the highest possible level of service in these unparalleled circumstances," says the company."Our sales and support staff are already working from home and are contactable via their usual email address. We are still active on our social media networks. Thank you very much for your understanding while #AmateAudioStaysHome."
Swiss pro audio and MI manufacturer Schertler has launched an initiative "to promote music and cohesion". "If you are a Schertler artist, a client, or if you play any instrument and are happy to be a part of this. Please share a video where you play on any social media, use the hashtag #StayAtHomeWithSchertler and tag us!
Italian loudspeaker manufacturer K-array has closed its factory and will offer support remotely until early April due to the coronavirus outbreak in Italy.
"At K-array, with the safety of our staff as the top concern, we have already been taking necessary steps to adapt our operations while remaining committed to driving business by enacting remote smart working for those who can, which has enabled us to interact with our customers and suppliers in a more safe and active way than before," says the company in a statement. "Our next action in respect to the latest restrictions imposed by the Italian government 22 March is to suspend all activity within the factory. K-array will remain engaged and available for support Monday through Thursday only by smart working through 3 April. "We appreciate your flexibility and understanding while we work together to navigate these circumstances. We reiterate our commitment to keep you updated and ask that you do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns."
Elation Professional and the ADJ Group of Companies have issued a statement to its clients and partners, available in full here. The companies' US operations will operate Monday to Thursday only whilst the European facility in Kerkrade, the Netherlands, remains operational but will not be open to customers and vendors; they can instead access free online trainings and product demo webinars.
DWR Distribution has also written a lengthy message of support, which can be read in full here. "Right now, we have fallen on some unprecedented challenges, but we will not be defeated," urges the company. "After every war, there is a respite; after every victory is a celebration. Generations before us have faced greater dangers, and they have survived. We will, too. The sun will come up, the people will go back into the streets, and we will mobilise our forces to throw the biggest celebration that the planet has ever seen."
A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) has been "deeply shocked by the immediate and devastating impact that COVID-19 has had on companies' and people's livelihoods". "With our origins going back nearly 50 years, in that time we have never witnessed before such an unprecedented shut down of the industry that we are so hugely passionate about and proud to serve," says the company in a statement. "Although we have made adjustments in response to these unprecedented market conditions, for our customers we remain in operation as normal, and continue to have large stocks available."
Barcelona-based Amate Audio's founder and CEO Juan Amate says the company has implemented "adaptive measures" in this time of unprecedented crisis. "We are taking immediate action to secure the integrity of our supply and distribution chains and our clients' business, as well as our continued financial health and corporate wellbeing, throughout the course of the crisis and beyond. To this end, we are able to guarantee the continued delivery of orders to our clients during any reasonably foreseeable interruption to production, as may be required by the civil authorities. Likewise, our ability to quickly restart and achieve volume production secures our distribution and fulfilment capability as far as is possible. We do this with the utmost attention to the health and safety of our employees, whose wellbeing is always our first concern."
Lighting solutions maker Artistic Licence has also sought to reassure clients. "Our sales and production departments are operating normally and we have good levels of stock available for immediate delivery," the company says in a statement. "As a precaution, the decision has been made that staff who can work from home will do so from today onwards, until further notice. Email and telephone details will remain the same and all staff can be contacted as normal."
Danley Sound Labs has shared a similar statement: "We have now implemented measures to ensure the health and welfare of all our employees. However, as Danley builds its products in low-density production facilities in Georgia and North Carolina, we have the capability of providing many of our products during this unprecedented time. Our OS, GO2 and Nano lines are readily available. Wooden products will take a little longer." Many of Danley's engineers and technical support crew are working from home, and clients are encouraged to use emails to reach their representative.
EM Acoustics' operations director Mike Wheeler has the loudspeaker manufacturer doesn't expect to suffer from supply chain disruption, adding: "At the present time, we have no staffing issues and our manufacturing schedules are operating as normal. We are therefore able to fulfil all orders for the forseeable future without significant delay. However with new government policies being implemented at short notice we will continue to monitor and heed expert advice, and will notify you of any changes to our activities."
The Netherlands' Highlite International has vowed to stand by its clients. "The coronavirus pandemic has put a stop to so many entertainment possibilities. This affects everybody who puts their passion for this line of work first. But sometimes you need a bit of dark to appreciate the light and there are always ways to find the right light. (…) The true power of entertainment is you. Your passion is your drive and your motivation is the energy to keep going when everything else tends to stop. And we at Highlite support you all the way."
Neutrik (UK) has also said it has put measures in place to ensure the safety of its employees and is adhering to all site hygiene recommendations issued by the government and the WHO, with some of its staff now working from home. "Having put these measures in place, we are able to fully maintain production, fulfil and ship orders at this time," says the company. "All frontline sales and support team members are contactable on all the usual channels of communication."
Mark Perrins, MD of Neutrik (UK), comments: "As circumstance surrounding Covid-19 changes we will adapt in line with current legislation and guidelines to ensure the safety of our employees and customers. If this involves any operational changes, we will notify our customers and suppliers immediately. In the meantime, on behalf of the entire company I would like to express to everyone our best wishes for their wellbeing, and our hope for a speedy end to the crisis."
More to follow . . .