The crux of this innovative project started years before when Charlie Foinette and Mark studied Archeology. Now you might think Archeology is messing around in dirt, but there’s a huge amount of science and history involved. I did Archeology as something different to do with my mum decades ago. It gave us a different connection in common. This connection resurfaced as I listened to Mark and read Waterloo Uncovered’s blog.
Fast forward both Mark and Charlie served as officers in the Coldstream Guards. On leaving the Army, Mark was encouraged to return to Archeology to aid his journey through the mental and physical scars service had left. Charlie is still serving. On taking his regiment to a tour of Hougoumont Farm on the battlefield of Waterloo – Hougoumont is “sacred ground” to the regiment – Charlie noticed there had not been much archeological investigation at the site.
In 2015 the bi-centenary anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo, Project #WaterlooUncovered was ignited bringing together serving personnel, veterans dealing with their own ongoing mental and physical battles, archeologists and many more diverse occupants.
On the radio this morning, Mark explained their project to build a replica of the Battle of Waterloo the size of a doubles tennis court will take another couple of years to complete but the legacy will last much longer with further projects.
The beauty of this simple idea is a culmination of what we’ve long known aids the recovery of the mind. A simple idea – which is always the best kind of idea – showing innovation in bringing anything’s together. For me, these include:
- Everyone working on the dig and projects learn from each other as well as history.
- Serving and veteran personnel get a perspective on what those who went before them centuries ago went through.
- Personnel not connected with the Forces get an insight into what war would have been like and what it’s like today as everyone shares their experiences.
- Human connections
- The scars slowly heal.
Businesses can learn a lot from this fantastic project. I wonder if Charlie and Mark realise the huge footprint they and their teams will leave behind for future generations to learn from – not just about war and history but the importance of recovery, respect and valuing mental health.
Check out Waterloo Uncovered’s blog and while you do, think about the business you work in.
Can you replicate/adapt anything?
#history #emotionalintelligence #mentalhealth #wellbeing #recovery #veterans #archeology #peoplepower