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Saturday, April 20, 2024
Pumphouse’s tech-savvy mentors teaching seniors how to use digital devices

Federal grant funds program to help older adults navigate modern technology


For the tech-savvy, taking photos, creating digital images or downloading apps on a mobile device may seem mundane.

But for some older adults who grew up in a pre-digital age, these tasks can be daunting.

Thanks in part to the federal New Horizons for Seniors program, which supports projects that make a difference in the lives of seniors in their communities, the Niagara Pumphouse Arts Centre is able to offer the “Creating Memories & Companionship through Technology” program.

It consists of a series of free online and in-studio workshops that allow seniors to learn technology at their own pace. The sessions are taught by volunteer trainers and mentors all aged 50-plus.

And the Pumphouse is also looking for more tech-savvy adults aged 50 and up who want to be digital trainers and mentors.  Contact volunteers@niagarapumphouse.ca for more details.

The classes provide hands-on experience on using mobile devices not only for connectivity and other useful everyday tasks but also for creative projects including photography and digital art.

“Engaging in art activities is therapeutic at every stage in life and is known to reduce mental stress,” says Rima Boles, director of the arts centre.

And “having instructors and mentors in the same age range takes away the stress or intimidation of learning new technologies,” Boles said.

“The social connection that results from interacting with fellow seniors also promotes the health and well-being of all participants.”

A limited number of spots for in-person sessions are available to ensure the comfort and safety of participants. Instructors’ assistants will be available during class for those who need support in navigating through their devices.

The schedule and information to register for the New Horizon classes are posted at niagarapumphouse.ca/programs. For telephone assistance in signing up, people can call 905-468-5455.

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