Finding and sharing your family's war memories just got easier with He Pou Aroha, the Community Cenotaph Roadshow Unit arriving at Rotorua Library in Te Aka Mauri.
He Pou Aroha Community Cenotaph is a purpose-built digitisation kiosk which gives access to the Online Cenotaph and enables you to scan and add your family's war-related memorabilia to the site.
An initiative of the Auckland War Memorial Museum, the digitisation unit has visited libraries, community centres and museums across the North Island. It will be situated on the second floor of Rotorua Library from 19 October to 23 November.
Heritage and Research Team Lead Ani Sharland says the arrival of the kiosk is timely and coincides with commemorating Armistice Day and 100 years since the end of World War One.
"It's an opportunity for the community to read and contribute material about family members and loved ones who served for Aotearoa New Zealand", says Sharland.
There are over 127,000 records relating to those who served New Zealand on the Online Cenotaph, including biographical information and photographs of those who served as well as images of their medals.
In addition, searching for the records of family members, reading information already on the database, and laying a virtual poppy, people can help enhance these records further by sharing their stories and information.
Sharland is encouraging members of the community to bring items such as photographs, letters, diaries and medals into the library to scan and upload by using the kiosk.
"At a time we are remembering those who served in the World War 1 conflict and all of the other conflicts that Aotearoa New Zealand as a country has been involved in, we ask you to dig out the photographs and objects that belong to your family and friends who served and help create a lasting legacy".
The kiosk contains an object photo booth that can digitise photographs, documents and small war related items within minutes. The digitised items are then uploaded to the Online Cenotaph and added to the story of the relevant service person which can then be shared with current and future generations.
He Pou Aroha Community Cenotaph is easy to navigate and library staff are available to assist people using the kiosk from Monday to Saturday. People of all ages are welcome to view and use the interactive kiosk anytime during library opening hours through until Friday 23 November. There is no cost and no need to book.
For further information, contact the Heritage & Research Team at Rotorua Library.