Teaching seniors to be tech savvy

Published on 16 December 2019


Technology moves at an alarming pace and it’s easy for older generations to fall behind, but a new program being offered by MidCoast Assist aims to bring 60 seniors up to speed with current devices, with the help of some younger ‘tech buddies’.

Thanks to a Federal Government Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP) grant, MidCoast Council’s ageing services team at MidCoast Assist will be implementing a ‘Technology in Homes’ project for older people in the MidCoast region and clients are lining up to be a part of the program.

“As soon as we introduced this program we had 60 willing participants and even more on the waiting list,” explained Coordinator of MidCoast Assist, Phillip Miller.

“Now we’re looking for young adults to volunteer as ‘Technology Buddies’ to assist us in delivering the program, which will be a win, win for everyone involved.”

The aim of the project is to help older people stay connected and become confident in using technology and never has there been a more important time to ensure everyone is up to date, as Phillip explained.

“During the recent bushfire crisis across the MidCoast we had clients who live in fire affected areas that may have needed to evacuate but because of the gap in some of their technology knowledge, they found it difficult to keep up to date with online updates and emergency notifications.”

Clients and Technology Buddies will participate in a technology showcase, hosted by MidCoast Assist where guest presenters will demonstrate a range of technology and devices, as well as answer any questions that may arise from participants, before clients can try out the technology for themselves.

Technology Buddies will receive training and support from a professional training organisation prior to meeting the clients and at the workshops, and a certificate of participation at the conclusion of the program.

They will also gain invaluable industry experience that they can apply to their resumes in future relating to aged care, information technology, sociology and psychology areas, but the benefits are about more than just what you see on paper.

“Our many MidCoast Assist volunteers will be able to testify that working with and helping the elderly members of our community is so rewarding,” added Phillip.

“This program will help to break down some inter-generational gaps and will offer wonderful opportunities for both the buddies and our clients to better understand and appreciate each other.”

If you know of someone with a good knowledge and understanding of current technology who would like to be involved, or to find out more information about the program and the requirements and responsibilities, head to the MidCoast Assist website http://www.midcoastassist.com.au/Assistance-with-ageing/Volunteers/Become-a-Technology-Buddy