England Orphan Trail Team

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England Project | Orphan Trail Team

Welcome to the England Project's Orphan Trail!

Project Coordinators: Ann Sadler & Susan Officer

Team Leaders: Julie Laxton | Elizabeth Viney | Gill Whitehouse

Trailblazers: Ian Acworth | Heather Brannon | Ann Sadler | Chris Colwell | Brad Cunningham | Nic Donnelly | Oscar Evans | Jo Fitz-Henry | Hilary Gadsby | Sarah Grimaldi | Owen Lake | Julie Laxton | Gillian Loake | Tomas Lowe | Elaine Mattsen | Rosalie Neve | Susan Officer | Rob Pavey | Neill Reed | Malcolm Rowlands |Paul Shepard | Ian Speed | Stephen Trueblood | Elizabeth Viney | Joan Whitaker | Steve Whitfield|Gill Whitehouse | Maureen Wilkins | Lin Wright


What is the Orphan Trail?

The Orphan Trail (OT) is a team that focuses on improving orphaned profiles of people who lived in England. An "orphaned profile" is a profile that doesn't have a Profile Manager and needs someone to care for it.

All new England Project members begin in the Orphan Trail team. You will be paired with a Trailblazer to show you the ropes, as you learn how to find English sources and edit English profiles.

You can join the England Project and begin the Orphan Trail by posting an answer on our G2G welcome post. Our Membership Coordinator will then contact you and get you started.

What will you learn?

The Orphan Trail focuses on the core skills needed to contribute the England Project's goals – which are to make every English profile the best it can be. You will learn about:

You will improve up to 3 orphaned profiles for each stage of the Trail, depending on your skill level and how quickly you learn. After each profile, your Trailblazer will give you feedback on your work before you move on to another profile or progress to the next stage of the Trail.

The Orphan Trail focuses on freely-available research resources, as many people don't have access to subscription services such as Ancestry and FindMyPast.

How long does the Trail take?

It depends. If you are well-organised and give it priority, you can finish Orphan Trail Part One (OT1) in about 2 weeks.

If you are busy with other things, it will take longer. We strongly encourage new members to get the Trail finished as soon as possible.

The Trail is popular and we sometimes have a waiting list before new members can begin. Once you are offered a place on the Trail, we will expect you to start straight away and to show a commitment to completing it. If you know you won't be able to dedicate yourself to the Trail over the next month or so, please wait until you have more time.

To get the best value from the Orphan Trail we strongly recommend that you use a PC or a laptop to research and to edit Wikitree profiles. In our experience, some people have difficulty noticing important details in images and following instructions when using a cell phone.

Do you need to complete the Trail?

Yes, new project members are asked to complete Orphan Trail Part One (OT1). OT1 covers more recent English profiles and sources for the period 1700-1957.

After you finish OT1, you can choose to either:

OT2 is optional. It covers earlier English sources for the period 1500-1699. There is sometimes a waiting list to begin OT2, so we may ask you to join another project team whilst you are waiting.

If you are not going to be working on pre-1700 profiles, then you are welcome to stop after OT1 and use the skills you have learnt to improve your own family's profiles and in your England Project team. If you find later that you want to continue onto OT2, then talk to one of the Orphan Trail leadership team.

Orphan Trail Part Three (OT3) is an invitation only component for project members applying for certification to work on pre-1500 profiles.

What will your Trailblazer do?

The Orphan Trail is mostly self-directed. You will be paired with a Trailblazer to help you with the tricky bits. Your Trailblazer will give you tips on where to look for sources and feedback on the content and presentation of the profiles you work on.

Our Trailblazers are friendly volunteers who like helping our new project members. They have been through the Trail themselves and are knowledgeable about English research and editing English profiles.

Don't expect your Trailblazer to do your research for you – the Trail is designed to empower you to do your own family history research and to show you how to improve the countless English profiles that need some TLC.

If you and your Trailblazer agree that you need more intensive help with the basics of WikiTree, or you have a disability, help from a Mentor or the Accessibility Angels may be more appropriate

What happens if you don't stay in touch with your Trailblazer or don't complete the Trail?

It's important to stay in regular contact with your Trailblazer.

If your Trailblazer hasn't heard from you for more than 2 weeks, we may email you to let you know your participation in the Trail has been paused and who to contact when you are ready to resume. Please understand that, when you resume, you may need to wait until a new Trailblazer is available,

The Orphan Trail is not open ended. If you do not resume the Trail within 3 months, we will assume you no longer wish to participate in the Trail. If you haven't completed OT1, your name will be removed from the list of England Project members.

Where to find out more?

Follow the links to your current stage of the Trail:

England Project | Orphan Trail Team

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England Orphans
England Orphans

Comments: 64

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Based on discussions with the Wales Project Project Leaders, Hilary and others, I have been tasked to develop a proposal for a Wales Orphan Trail.

There are several questions concerning your experience which should be of help in the development of our OT. Please advise who is willing to coordinate and how the communication could best take place.

Thanks, Stuart Awbrey, Wales Project Membership Coordinator

posted by Stuart Awbrey
Hi Stuart,

I am happy to work with you on this and will send you a PM to get things started.

Regards Susie ~ OT coPC

posted by Susie (Potter) Officer
Can I join please my email was hacked so could you comment on here or my profile please
posted on England Orphaned Profiles Team (merged) by [Living Walker]
Hello Kayleigh. Thank you for your interest in the Orphan Trail. Please answer this post in G2G and one of our team will be in touch with you soon. https://www.wikitree.com/g2g/1161852/do-you-want-to-become-an-england-project-member-in-2021
posted on England Orphaned Profiles Team (merged) by [Living Ford]
As we need to contact you via the private message system you will need to get your login email updated and then answer the post on G2G.

Look forward to welcoming you to the Project.

posted on England Orphaned Profiles Team (merged) by Hilary (Buckle) Gadsby
Can I still join this course

Many thanks Les Sykes

posted on England Orphaned Profiles Team (merged) by Les Sykes
I am a bit confused about the England project. Is the focus on the country England or is it the surname England?
posted on England Orphaned Profiles Team (merged) by Laura (Stewart) Cipriano
Hi, Laura, this project is focused on the country of England. If you would like to join please go to the G2G post Do you want to become an England Project member in 2021, and request to join the project. Please, make sure to post it as an 'Answer' to the original posted question.



posted on England Orphaned Profiles Team (merged) by Laura DeSpain