HORSHAM Agricultural Society has brought a new virtual experience to the older population of Horsham.
The show society started virtual tours of the Horsham showgrounds via a live feed on Facebook on Wednesday.
The tour showcased the historic stables and community garden along with volunteers and staff preparing for the 140th Horsham Show.
Horsham Agricultural Society secretary Andrea Cross said the group had taken the lead to provide virtual experiences for residents living in Horsham’s nursing homes.
Mrs Cross said the tour allowed the society to reconnect with former members and show-goers whose mobility prevents them from attending community events.
“A long serving agricultural society member George Miller has been a member up until 12-months ago and I thought we needed to reconnect with him,” she said.
“Mobility prevents George and other residents from Sunnyside Lutheran Retirement Village from attending community events.
“By working with the aged village staff, this concept will enable more people to virtually attend any activities posted on social media, but more importantly it is about inclusion.”
Following on from the virtual tours of the showgrounds, the Horsham Agricultural Society has plans to offer video coverage at this year’s Horsham Show.
“The footage from our first live feed was raw and not professional, but we can learn from that,” she said. “By doing a live feed, we learned that it wasn’t ideal and it might be better to make a video and post it later.”
Mrs Cross said social inclusion was the driving force between the virtual experience idea. She said other show societies and community events should consider adopting the concept.
“We also want to encourage other show societies who have nursing homes in their small towns, to post live action at their upcoming agricultural shows and liaise with the aged care staff, to broaden the reach of this concept,” she said.
“It’s such a simple model, which is already being used across social media but as shows struggle to remain not only viable but accessible across Australia, it will strengthen the support of these events.”
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