In­ter­net lessons prove pop­u­lar for seniors

Whitsunday Times - - COMMUNITY NEWS -

THE Whit­sun­day Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre’s (WNC) se­nior broad­band pro­gram has al­ready given 11 se­nior cit­i­zens the chance to at­tend one-onone lessons about the in­ter­net, with all par­tic­i­pants keen to learn more.

The se­nior broad­band pro­gram is par­tially funded by the Depart­ment of Fam­i­lies, Hous­ing, Com­mu­nity Ser­vices and In­dige­nous Af­fairs (FaHCSIA) with WNC fund­ing the bal­ance and host­ing the learn­ing at the cen­tre.

The ini­tia­tive aims to in­crease the con­fi­dence and skills of older Aus­tralians in their use of com­put­ers and the in­ter­net.

The pro­gram also ad­dresses the iso­la­tion that older Aus­tralians ex­pe­ri­ence in a tech­no­log­i­cal age.

Tu­tor for the pro­gram Re­becca Woods said the se­nior broad­band pro­gram was open to all peo­ple over 50 years of age re­gard­less of their skill level.

“I have seniors that have never used the in­ter­net or know how they can use the in­ter­net in their ev­ery­day lives through to seniors that want to up­grade from Win­dows 7 to Win­dows 8 soft­ware,” Ms Woods said.

Lessons so far have cov­ered topic such as email, pro­cess­ing pho­tos and doc­u­ments, ac­cess­ing on­line ac­counts for up­dat­ing in­for­ma­tion with or­gan­i­sa­tions like the Aus­tralian Elec­toral Com­mis­sion, web browsing and the use of so­cial me­dia sites such as Face­book.

“Many of the seniors have shown an in­ter­est in learn­ing about Face­book and other so­cial me­dias to con­nect with their fam­i­lies,” Ms Woods said.

“They are learn­ing that it is a great way to share pho­tos, keep up-to-date and gen­er­ally in­ter­act with their fam­i­lies. I hope to of­fer Face­book and Skype as a group-based les­son soon.”

Seniors can choose to bring their own lap­tops or use the cen­tre’s for their lessons.

The pro­gram is free and runs ev­ery Fri­day at the Whit­sun­day Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre, Hazel­wood Cres­cent, Can­non­vale. To book a les­son or for more in­for­ma­tion call 4946 7850.

TECH­NOL­OGY TALKS: Janet Hayes and pro­gram tu­tor Re­becca Woods at the Whit­sun­day Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre's se­nior broad­band pro­gram, which is teach­ing lo­cal res­i­dents over the age of 50 about a range of com­puter and in­ter­net-based pro­grams.

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