‘Lest We Forget’ (LWF) is a nationwide initiative, led by the University of Oxford, which aims to recognise and record those stories, objects and memories from World War One which survive – not in museum collections or history books – but in the hearts and homes of the very many families and individuals affected. The project uses the Oxford Community Collection Model to engage contributors both online and through various activities, such as digital collection events where visitors are welcome to bring their objects and stories to be digitially added to an online platform. It follows on from similar previous projects, like the Great War Archive and Europeana 1914-1918, with a particular focus on collaboration with schools and local community groups.
Thanks to a successful crowdfunding campaign the project is able both to provide practical support to local communities interested in running their own Digital Collection Days, and to enable individuals to upload material directly via its online platform.
A first collection event was held at the Cheney School in Oxford in November 2017. A group of students worked with the LWF team to record stories and digitise objects brought in by members of the local community. The event was a great success and showed that running a digital community collection event can be a rewarding activity for school students and staff alike, as well as ensure that valuable historic information and material is preserved and shared. The project team is now working with other schools and groups to plan and prepare future digital collection events and related activities.
The project has prepared a series of guides and documents that can be made freely available to prospective collection event organisers and anyone interested in bringing stories and experiences from the First World War to students, researchers and educators today.
To learn more about the project and find out about available support, please visit the project website https://lwf.web.ox.ac.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, visit the facebook or twitter pages for latest news and instant messaging facilities.