A new statewide technology initiative was launched Thursday, 12/10/2015, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, designed to help Senior Citizens learn more about digital technology.
The “Cyber Senior Training Pilot Program” is meant to help bridge the generational gap by helping seniors learn about iPads, iPhones and other digital technology. The program enables dedicated high school students to engage and inform Alabama senior citizens on the many benefits of digital literacy and helps boost statewide Internet adoption rates.
Gloria Gardner is a senior resident in Tuscaloosa who says the chance to learn more about digital technology was something she wasn’t going to pass up. “I’m learning how to use an iPad even though I am computer literate I do not own an iPad. The reason I don’t own one is because I don’t have anyone to teach me how to operate it. But this is great and I appreciate this.”
Thursday’s program took place at the Leroy McAbee Activity Center. High School student Noah Brazelton it from Trinity, Alabama and says it feels good to be on the team helping another generation learn about digital technology. “Everything is going digital and everything is going mobile, this is going to help them out.”
According to a recent study, seven in 10 seniors own a cellphone. The AT&T phone company is teaming up with the Alabama Department of Senior Services to make the project happen.
Jennifer Adams, Alabama State Adviser for Family, Career and Community Leaders of America said, “Quality of life will be improved immensely, when senior citizens realize that they can pay bills online, they can do banking online, they can do so many things. Also, entertaining things. It they are bedridden or do not have transportation, there’s a lot of ways they can reach out to their community and communicate with people in their family, also.”
Through May 2016, the program is still in a pilot stage, with nine local FCCLA chapters participating. FCCLA students serve as student trainers, working with senior citizens. The nine participating chapters are:
- Arab High School, Athens High School, Brookwood High School
- Geneva County High School, Priceville High School
- Robertsdale High School, Spanish Fort High School
- West Morgan High School, Woodland High School
Six senior centers are hosting the pilot program. They include the Arab Senior Center, the Daphne Sail Center, the Hartford Senior Center, the McAbee Activity Center, the Neel Senior Center and the Woodland Community Center.
AT&T, the Alabama Department of Senior Services, the Alabama Department of Education and the Alabama Association of FCCLA plan to expand the technology training program in the 2016-2017 school year.
Read Article (Tim Reid | wiat.com | 12/10/2015)
More and more state departments, agencies and organizations are realizing that Digital Literacy has reached a critical level. Programs such as this are spreading across the nation in an effort to address the issue.
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