Ancient writing classes for teenagers, cooking with recipes from World War I, Domino Day with archive boxes, geocaches and escape rooms. With actions like these, the Intermunicipal Archives Poperinge-Vleteren bridges the gap between children, young people and local heritage. Many class groups and vacation camps visit the reading room every year as a result. In Poperinge, children can now playfully engage with history outside the walls of the archive.
Together with archivist Tijs Goethals (IGA Poperinge-Vleteren), intern Yaicke Maselis (VIVES) designed an interactive walk for families with children at ErfgoedApp . To get closer to their environment, Yaicke worked out fun puzzles, assignments and quiz questions. In addition to various game modes, the creators linked a short educational section to the various stops each time. Those looking for more explanation can find simple links to Westhoek verbeeldt, the regional image bank with beautiful old photos that you will encounter during this walk.
Yaicke and Tijs also contacted illustrator Doreen Logie. Charlotje Keikop, known for the comic strips in the Poperinge city newspaper, quickly proved to be the ideal little character to accompany the walk. Families with children can follow and help her during her walk.
Doreen created a number of new characters in addition to her existing ones and also drew on a number of well-known women who colored the town's history. So we find out what Nobel Prize winner Marie Curie did in Poperinge. Or how Leontine Permeke flourished as one of the first female photographers in a typically male world.
For the archive, it was an obvious choice to put women at the center of this walk. Although Countess Maria van der Steen de Jehay and Baroness Valentine Terlinden became the town's first honorary citizens after World War I, women remained in the background in Poperinge's historiography for too long. As an extension of the More Women on the Street campaign, the creators set out to find women from recent and not-so recent history who deserve a place on the streets. That search proved easier than imagined. The archive visitors were happy to help and eventually even choices had to be made from a large group of interesting ladies. For now they are only digitally visible, but who knows, maybe this walk will provide the first female street name in Poperinge!