Broadband for Seniors program extended

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26 Aug 2015

Amana Living resident Garry Wood was engrossed in the cricket scores when we stole this photo. Garry is one of several residents at nine of our sites taking advantage of the Broadband for Seniors program.

The Commonwealth-funded initiative, which was recently extended to June 2017, supplies computers, internet access and technical support for older people in community hubs, libraries, retirement villages and aged care centres.

A grant has enabled Amana Living to provide a Broadband for Seniors trainer to sit with residents and offer support and guidance.

Louise Molyneux (pictured with Garry) said that the role appealed to her because she had enjoyed teaching her own mum how to use a computer, and she saw how worthwhile the work could be.

Louise helps residents communicate with their families online, and encourages them to explore a variety of applications, following their interests and needs.

“Many residents already had email addresses, and some have their own laptops or tablets, but they weren’t all confident about using them,” said Louise.

“A couple of residents are now really into Facebook and instant messaging too. One lady has connected with her grandchildren that way, while others are using Skype.

Another resident loves YouTube, and several follow the cricket.”

YouTube has also been popular with residents who have no interest in learning to use the computer themselves but enjoy watching and listening with others.

Louise finds video clips and runs ‘juke box’ sessions, in which the residents pick the tunes and join in with a toe-tapping sing-along.

Broadband for Seniors is available at four Amana Living villages and five care centres.