The Australian Centre of Rural Entrepreneurship (ACRE) is responding to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic. We are sharing this update to keep you informed about ACRE operations during this difficult time.

ACRE is following advice on COVID-19 from the state and federal health departments. The ACRE team are monitoring developments and assessing any potential impact on our services, facilities and events.

As of Thursday 19 March 2020, we have postponed all of our face-to-face training events scheduled for the coming weeks. We will continue to monitor developments prior to making decisions on events and workshops scheduled for later this year.

Fortunately, online learning is a key part of ACRE service offerings. We are currently working with our international partners,  the Social Enterprise Institute (Canada) and Social Enterprise Academy (Scotland), to offer a suite of online learning options to encourage and support people and organisations who are seeking to build skills and connect during this difficult time. We will share news about these options very soon.

We all have a role to play in slowing infections in Australia, protecting and supporting each other.

ACRE owns and manages a number of sites that host group gatherings. Although all events and activities have been cancelled or postponed, people that do visit the Old Beechworth Gaol, Typo Station or the Breakout Co-working space are requested to maintain social distancing and follow hygiene practices – covering your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with a tissue or flexed elbow, washing hands thoroughly with soap and water, and using alcohol-based hand sanitiser. If you are unwell, or experiencing flu like symptoms, please stay home.

We are facing an unprecedented challenge – and we must do everything in our power to flatten the curve of COVID-19. A decision on any potential closure of ACRE and its social enterprises will take into consideration developments in the COVID-19 situation.