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Since 1958 the VABT has been providing emergency financial assistance to those in the entertainment industry who, through poor health or ill fortune, find themselves with nowhere else to turn.

The VABT is a not-for-profit charity run by a committee of members who work within and outside of the entertainment industry. They generously give of their time to raise funds and provide financial assistance to those who call on the VABT in their time of need.

The VABT have an incredible team of volunteers who assist with bucket rattles and other fund raising events held throughout the year. Along with contributions from donors, the VABT has been able to continue this vital work for 60 years.

A message from our president

It goes without saying that the last couple of years have been extremely difficult. As our industry starts to find its feet again and audiences flock back to our theatres and assorted venues, it is almost tempting to think we are returning to something resembling normal.

While we all fervently hope the trials of the last two years are behind us, we know that our friends and colleagues will still need support. And despite our name, our recipients work in all areas of the performing arts industry. Illnesses, accidents, and other emergencies small and large will require the VABT to be that first and immediate response when assistance is most needed, as we have done since 1958.

The precarity of our industry is well known. We don’t accrue sick leave, holiday pay or superannuation. We don’t receive bonuses and any period of unemployment quickly drains what little savings there may be. What is equally well known is the generosity of those in our industry. Usually the first to help out in times of disaster or tragedy but also reluctant to accept help themselves believing others are more deserving. But when the need arises and there is no-one else to turn to, it’s the VABT who can ease the pressure. Our assistance may be small or it may be more considerable. But we respond with speed, compassion and complete privacy. And while it is the committee that is there to help, ultimately it is the industry supporting the industry— friends helping friends, as we know donors may become recipients and vice versa.

In November 2021, I had the privilege of being appointed President of the VABT. I join a tireless and experienced committee dedicated to serving our performing arts colleagues. In particular I would like to thank Sally-Anne Upton who recently stepped down as our President after seven years. Sal has been on the VABT committee for over twenty years and will continue to play an important role in the times ahead. Thank you Sal.

The VABT conducts a number of fundraising activities. If you would like to assist the VABT you can become a volunteer and help out at our famous bucket rattles collecting money after shows. Just click on the Volunteer button.

Or if you would like to make a donation simply select the Donate button.

Any contribution you can make, large or small, would be greatly appreciated.

Michael Fry

President of the Victorian Actors’ Benevolent Trust