Age Action is encouraging older people to make it a New Year’s resolution to sign up to one of their specially designed computer training courses, and so embrace all the opportunities which technology offers.
The national charity for older people has trained more than 16,000 older learners since 2007. “Our courses are especially designed for older people who are using a computer for the first time,” according to Pauline Power, manager of Age Action’s Getting Started computer training programme. “People are taught at their own pace, by their own tutor.”
There is strong demand for classes from older people who want to use new technology to remain in contact with their families abroad using email, Skype and social media. “Many of our learners come to us because they are frustrated by the growing number of advertisements which feature only email or website addresses,” Ms Power said. “We also have savy consumers who want to avail of some of the great discounts which are available only online. And then there are learners who are eager to access information about everything from news and current affairs, to rights and entitlements.”
“We understand that some older people may be anxious about signing up for a computer class,” Ms Power said. “But we can assure them there is nothing to be afraid of. You can’t break the computer and we have some wonderful tutors across Ireland who can help you open the door to a whole new world of opportunities. Make 2014 the year you took the important step of joining one of our classes.”
Age Action’s Getting Started programme is supported by the Department of Communications’ Benefit IV funds. Classes are open to anyone aged 55 and older. They are currently running in Dublin (including in Dublin City Council’s sheltered housing complexes), Kildare, Wicklow, Cork, Monaghan, Waterford, Galway, Mayo, Roscommon, Louth and Donegal.
The charity is also looking for volunteer tutors for classes in many of these areas. Anyone with a basic understanding of computers can help, and training is provided. Tutors must be available to commit two hours a week over a four week period.
Details of how to register for a class or volunteer as a tutor are as follows contact Age Action at 01-4756989 or email email@example.com;