Project Poppy Box offers a way for ECEC services to acknowledge ANZAC Day
Each year on 25 April, Australians gather to acknowledge the sacrifices made by men and women who have served, or who are currently serving, their country during war, conflict and peacekeeping operations.
Early childhood education and care (ECEC) services are playing an increasingly important role in these acknowledgements, supporting children and families to understand the significance of the day, and participating in ceremonies to mark the occasion.
This year, for the first time since the Second World War, ANZAC Day will look very different for Australians as the result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with dawn services around the country cancelled.
Despite the restrictions and cancellations, many education and care services are striving to find a way to acknowledge this special day in a way which includes children and families in their services, as well as those who are choosing to self isolate.
Enter Project Poppy Box, the brainchild of Loddon Shire Council, located in Victoria.
Using the well-known poppy symbol, chosen to represent the sacrifice of war, the Council has suggested that services, families, and others in the community place a cut-out poppy on their mailbox.
In place of attending a Dawn Service, a number of councils and community groups have suggested that Australian’s pay their respects on balconies, front gates and driveways at 6am on Anzac Day for #StandTo, in place of attending a dawn service.
Musicians are encouraged to learn and play the ‘Last Post’ at home to stand united in music and ‘in spirit’ in the Music for Mateship campaign.
The Australian War Memorial will hold a revised Anzac Day service with wreaths laid by representatives of the Commonwealth as well as current and former veterans. The national commemoration will be televised on the ABC.
More information on the Project Poppy Box campaign may be found here.