Thursday, 8 November 2018
At the YMCA - we remember
This Sunday, November 11, 2018 commemorates 100 years since Armistice Day 1918. When we consider the young men under the age of 19 (250,000 of them) who fought on our behalf In WW1, it reinforces the bravery and legacy our young people have.
We will remember all of our soldiers and young people who died in WW1.
Lest we forget.
Last week Melinda Crole, YMCA Australia's CEO, was in YMCA Brisbane’s offices and the sea of “hand-made” red poppies were out on full display (see photo). Earlier this year, YMCA Brisbane started out with a goal to make 6,200 red poppies (one for every ten Australian soldiers who died in WW1). The Y reached that target within a month. They then raised the bar to 62,000 (one for every soldier lost) - they reached that by August. So they added in the New Zealand losses and took the new target to 80,000. They achieved 120,000 hand-made red poppies!
100 years ago, Moina Michael, who worked for the American YMCA, read Lieutenant Colonel McCrae's poem just before the Armstice, and was so moved by it that she wrote a poem in reply and decided to wear a red poppy always as a way of keeping faith, as McCrae had written in his poem. At a meeting of YMCA secretaries, held in November 1918, she talked about the poem and her poppies. Anna Guérin, the French YMCA secretary, took the idea further by selling poppies to raise money for widows, orphans, and needy veterans and their families (see Australian War Memorial website here).
Congratulations to Meg Woolfe from YMCA Brisbane, who lead the project - see her full interview here.