June 08, 2021

The Town of Victoria Park hosted the 2021 Vic Park Business Awards at a glittering ceremony at the Optus Stadium on June 4.

Holyoake won the overall award – Business of the Year 2021. The runners up were Social Manna, and Archer St Physiotherapy Centre.

“Holyoake is very pleased to accept this award which is an acknowledgement of having navigated a challenging year successfully. We dedicate this award to all our clients, staff, leadership team, funding bodies, and stakeholders.” said Angie Paskevicius, CEO of Holyoake.

COVID-19 has been an unprecedented time for everyone and has challenged the way we live and work. At Holyoake, we adapted to the situation by creating a Covid Response Team to monitor and respond to the rapidly evolving situation. All staff were equipped to work from home safely and efficiently with Microsoft Teams.

Our priority was to ensure continuity of counselling services through the crisis. Anticipating service disruption, we established safe and confidential phone and video counselling options for clients. This was crucial because the demand for our services increased due to rising levels of stress and mental wellbeing issues.

Recognising that COVID-19 would have a severe impact on substance misuse and mental health, we established teams to identify gaps in services and to develop innovative new programs such as a Family Therapy Program, a Caregiver Support Program, and a Raising Resilient Kids Program.

COVID-19 also had a major impact on our DRUMBEAT social enterprise as all our training workshops across Australia and the USA had to be cancelled. Rather than take the easy way by suspending this program temporarily, we decided to take the program online. Within just four weeks, we produced over 130 videos in house, developed related materials, and uploaded to the Moodle learning platform. It was a very stressful time, but we launched DRUMBEAT Online in May 2020. This proved to be visionary, as this online program has taken off in a big way. People around the world can now complete the program anytime, anywhere from the convenience of their own digital devices. Click here for more details.

Before the onset of the pandemic, Holyoake had secured funding from Lotterywest to renovate our main office in Victoria Park; construction was scheduled to start in October 2020. When COVID-19 hit, Holyoake consulted with the project managers and decided to start the project earlier in April during the lockdown when no staff were on the premises. As a result, the renovation was completed in October 2020.

Holyoake thanks the Town of Victoria Park for this award and we congratulate all the other winners, runners up and nominees.