Stormont minister Peter Weir has endorsed the educational outreach of the Orange Institution during a visit to the Museum of Orange Heritage in Belfast.
The education minister commended the museum on its collection of informative resources, including a series of school workbooks and handling boxes.
The schoolbooks, aimed specifically at pupils at Key Stage 2 and 3 level, and community groups, provide detailed information on the Loyal Institution itself and seminal historical events, including the Glorious Revolution, the Great War and World War Two.
As well as personally viewing the workbooks and handling boxes, containing materials relating to Orangeism, the minister also enjoyed a guided tour of the museum, incorporating the interactive educational zone which facilitates school group visits.
Mr Weir said: “I am pleased to have had the opportunity to visit the Museum of Orange Heritage today and to view the facilities and educational resources on offer. I commend the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland on the educational outreach work that they are involved in. School groups, through their specific programmes, will gain an understanding of the history of the Orange Order, as well as historical events such as World War One and World War Two.”
Museum curator, Dr Jonathan Mattison, said: “We were delighted to welcome Minister Weir to the Museum of Orange Heritage so he could witness for himself first-hand how education is fundamental to our many outreach initiatives.
“We trust the minister will have been impressed, not only by the museum as an educational resource, but also by our extensive literature and materials which are key components of our ongoing engagement with schools. Reaching out to pupils on a cross-community basis is serving to foster a greater understanding of Orangeism and its place within wider society.”
He added: “The Museum of Orange Heritage offers visitors, including school groups, the opportunity to learn and engage with a rich, vibrant and evolving tradition that has played a significant role in Irish, British and world history. We want to encourage everyone to visit the facility and engage with our programmes.”
For more information, or to obtain copies of the educational material, please contact the Museum of Orange Heritage on 028 9070 1122 or email [email protected]