A great volunteer opportunity that will help others

Now, here’s an opportunity too good to miss for those of you who are interested in history, ancestry, volunteering, walking, and photography.

Wow. This is beginning to sound like a ‘five flies with one shot’ type story. You can do it all with this opportunity. Seriously.

Now that I have nothing to do but play golf and surf the internet, I’m discovering a whole new world of opportunities. One such opportunity is the Billion Graves opportunity.

The Billion Graves site says it aims to: “… preserve precious records found in cemeteries throughout the world. We use modern technology to capture images of headstones with their GPS locations so users worldwide can access those records anywhere. BillionGraves strives to do just that: preserve at least one billion graves. And we won’t stop there!”

Obviously, photographing a billion headstones, uploading the photos and associated identification details, is all done by a band of volunteers from across the planet. People like you and me with time to spare.

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I bumped into the Billion Graves site while looking for a photo of my father’s memorial plaque. When I joined up, within minutes, I received a request to photograph a headstone at the Alice Springs Memorial Cemetery.

I downloaded the free Billion Graves app to my iPhone and after having a play with it and viewing several of the how-to videos on the Billion Graves site, I accepted the request and headed off to the cemetery with a map of the cemetery, my iPhone, digital camera, and a copy of the plot and row details of the person whose plaque I was to photograph.

In the 60 years I have been coming and going from Alice Springs, I had never once visited the Alice Springs Memorial Cemetery. It was a much more pleasant experience than I had imagined during the thousands of times I had driven past and contemplated that one day I’ll probably end up there.

I walked among the lovely grass and flowers and eventually located the relevant headstone, took several photos and submitted them to Billion Graves.

The Billion Graves app has information about which burial sites have been catalogued and which haven’t, so it saves you from photographing sites only to find that someone has already completed the job.

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If you have time on your hands, a camera or smartphone, and like walking and being outdoors, this could be a great volunteer opportunity for you. Find more information at the site here:

Will you be giving this a try?  Do you have something similar that you do online?


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