Students from schools in Naitaisiri check out on the new Virtual Museum website during the launch in Naitasiri. Picture: SOPHIE RALULU
MORE than 1300 items on display at the Fiji Museum have been digitised to give students in rural areas the chance to view exhibits with just a click of the mouse.
Through the Virtual Museum, more than 1300 individual photographs of exhibits have been placed online with accompanying descriptions.
The Virtual Museum was launched by Education Minister Dr Mahendra Reddy yesterday at Naitasiri Secondary School.
He said he wanted students in rural and maritime areas to know the Virtual Museum was compiled with them in mind.
To put the Virtual Museum together — local audio visual company First Fighter Video and Audio Production — professionally photographed 609 artefacts in 23 photography sessions while the other 246 images were scanned and provided by the Fiji Museum.
"We have to find a way to take institutions like the Fiji Museum with the stock of knowledge that they have, to the people who cannot make it to the physical museum," Dr Reddy said.
"Now the geographical layout of Fiji is very challenging. Here we have people all over the maritime area inhabiting 150 islands.
"So we have to ensure the education we provide to urban schools is also provided to the rural and interior.
"We have students in Suva Grammar and Marist Brothers' High School who could walk to the Fiji Museum on any given day and enjoy the exhibits there.
"That's not the same situation for students in Udu Point, Cicia, in the Yasawa Islands or Kadavu. We are now thinking of how we can take this stock of knowledge to not only the students but teachers and civil servants — that is why we came up with this project.
"Many schools from the interior and outer islands have to take special field trips to visit the museum and this visit is only for a short duration. Now, everyone, including you all can visit the Fiji Museum online from where ever you are. You can access all the things kept in the museum while sitting at home."
The Virtual Museum scales to screen size so it can be viewed on PCs, laptops, tablets and phones.
Added to this, all work was done in Fiji by Fiji-owned businesses and locally-based staff, working closely with staff from the Fiji Museum.
The Virtual Museum can be viewed on www.fijimuseum.org.fj.
Babasiga (pronounced bambasinga) is the dry land of Macuata in northern Fiji - our place in the sun in Fiji. Peceli is from Fiji from the village is Vatuadova and the beach is Nukutatava. Peceli Ratawa passed away on 27th December 2015 so this is Wendy's blog now. Wendy is an Australian and today live in Geelong, Australia.