COLEDALE could soon become a gateway to Cape York, Arnhem Land, Redfern and beyond.
The real world was cast aside for a couple of days at the Tamworth Youthie, as staff got immersed in the digital domain of drones, robots and virtual reality.
While it might look like fun and games, it’s hoped the technology could be a gateway to, not only far-flung parts of the country but, an engaging experience with education.
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Local kids will get a chance to try out the new gadgets at The Youthie from 9.30 tomorrow.
The tech-treasures have been provided by the Indigenous Digital Excellence (IDX) organisation, which has been in town this week.
IDX Flint program manager Grant Cameron said the scheme should break down and fears surrounding technology.
“Everyone has that certain fear of technology, until it’s broken down and explained in easy terms,” Mr Cameron told The Leader.
“They were all really engaged and could see the value of this type of technology in the community in terms of its engagement, its learning outcomes and that it’s a very practical way of learning.”
On Wednesday, the group flew drones over the region and Mr Cameron said the vision would become a national resource.
“In the future, we intend to use the content that we gain off the drones and start to make community virtual platforms,” he said.
“We could have a kid in Tamworth see what it’s like in Cape York, Arnhem Land, Broome, Redfern and vice versa.”
He said drones were particularly valuable to regional communities.
“We took the group out on country and taught them how to fly drones,” he said.
“We explain how a drone is really valuable in remote, rural and regional areas for caring for country, land management, agriculture, mapping for sites, photography and videography.”
The Tamworth group got a run down on basic coding and virtual reality technology too.
The program will be open for the community on Thursday and Friday and Mr Cameron urged local kids to get involved.
“We’ll allow them to have a taste of all the technologies that we’ve shown the facilitators,” he said.
“I really want the kids to have fun and enjoy themselves and just learn.
“Don’t be ashamed to ask questions or make mistakes because that’s how you learn.”
Youthie team leader Veronica Filby said the addition of the technology to the facility was a plus.
“We’re going to look at what the kids are interested in and hopefully what they provide will be in-line with that, so we can continue running workshops and skill-building youth in the future,” she said.