Empowering a modern life: improving senior citizen’s digital literacyFebruary 12, 2019
This article is authored by Ms. Aparna Thakker, Founder and CEO of Empowerji
Seniors are a generation who are currently over the age of 60 years. This group mainly constitutes our Parents who have worked a busy life bringing us up in a time when things were much different from now. Technological advances have transformed our lives in several ways over the last couple of years. For younger generations, this modernisation is pleasantly welcome. But for a generation not native to technology, these changes can be daunting. Contrary to popular belief that technology is only for the youngsters, seniors can find much support, engagement, and convenience from technology as well. With a little help, seniors too can open their lives to the benefits of technology.
When you are in your second innings, life slows down and with everyone else busy with their schedules, loneliness can creep in. To keep loneliness & isolation at bay, social media is a good medicine. Although social media cannot replace human interactions, it creates a feeling of community. The ability to connect, communicate and engage with family and friends can fill up your life with smiles and happiness.
The internet is the Go-To place for all information. Whether it is getting the latest news or learning about interesting new things, it is an incredible resource for lifelong learning. Popular search engines and video portals can be visited by seniors for How-To tutorials, exercise routines and world cuisine recipes.
Apps and Sites provide convenience to daily routine life like no other. Gone are the days when you need to stand in line to pay a bill or at checkout lines for groceries. There are several Apps and Sites that will help you do that with much ease. This is a boon for seniors with mobility issues. Be it for shopping needs, travel needs or even ordering food to satisfy a craving, there is an app for everything. Infact there is an App to teach you how to use other Apps!
Smart wearables have self-health monitoring and reporting technologies and can keep the seniors and their loved ones at ease. These devices can monitor heart rate, steps taken, blood sugar, blood pressure, etc.
Since many seniors live by themselves, investing in smart security and smart devices for their homes can be very useful.
So we agree that technology can really improve the quality of life of seniors. But there is a learning curve. Senior require time and patience to learn new things. There is a need for technology training specifically designed for the senior community. They require interactive sessions where they can try out the applications under the guidance of a patient teacher. Only practise will make them comfortable with using new things. Although there are companies addressing this gap there is a lot more to be done to help seniors feel empowered with Technology so that they can live happier independent lives? The senior community is a growing section of our population and to see true digital progress in the nation, we need to ensure that seniors too are digitally savvy.