DIY digital remembrance for Anzac Day

By Melissa Coade

April 12, 2021

A memorial is seen on the front lawn of a Rydalmere resident during the early hours of Anzac Day as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Sydney, Saturday, April 25, 2020. (AAP Image/Steven Saphore)

A new portal is offering anybody’s at-home Anzac Day event an air of authenticity with a Spotify playlist of hymns and a template ‘order of service’.

Administered by Veterans’ Affairs, the ‘Anzac Day Kitbag’ portal includes everything a proud Australian needs to commemorate April 25 during a time of global pandemic. 

The department has virtually thought of everything — with specially designed banners and tiles for members of the public to share on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Cooks can refer to the department’s official recipe for Anzac biscuits, and for those more creatively inclined, there are instructions on how to make a wreath or crafting a paper poppy.

“At its heart, Anzac Day is a time for personal reflection, and attending a dawn service or march is just one way we can show our respect, but there are a number of ways Australians can commemorate in the lead-up to, and on, Anzac Day,” Veterans’ Affairs minister Darren Chester said. 

At the risk of major public services being scuppered, as in 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic put paid to many physical Anzac Day plans nationwide, the department has developed a list of different ways Australians can mark the occasion at home. Unlike last year, preparations can start well ahead of time. 

If you intend to conduct your own dawn service or Anzac commemorative service, the department has compiled two playlists on Spotify that covers three of the key types of musical interludes (bugle calls, hymns, and the Australian and New Zealand national anthems). The public can also download a recommended order of service that includes opportunities for speeches, poems and moments of silence. 

There is a guide on the protocol for flags during a dawn service, including that any flags flown on Anzac day should be raised to half-mast at the conclusion of a ceremony, and then raised back to the top of a flagpole at midday.

Minister Chester encouraged members of the public to reflect on the ‘the service and sacrifice of all Australian personnel who have served the nation for over a century’.

“Last year, in the face of a global pandemic we found new ways to honour those who serve and have served — driveway vigils at dawn, private floral tributes, and contacting current and former defence personnel to check in and thank them for their service,” Mr Chester said.

“With many options available to commemorate this Anzac Day, as a nation we can all proudly carry on the legacy of acknowledging service and sacrifice on Anzac Day in 2021.”


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