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Open eir announces sponsorship of Silver Surfer Awards

Published 21/10/2016

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Open eir has announced its sponsorship of the Silver Surfer Awards as part of a two-year partnership with Age Action. Now in its eighth year, the Awards celebrate and recognise the achievements of older people using technology and the Internet as well as the volunteers who teach these skills.

Baz Ashmawy and his amazing mum Nancy joined Age Action's Eamon Timmins and Carolan Lennon of open eir to launch the Silver Surfers Awards

The five categories for the 2017 open eir Silver Surfer Awards are:

New to IT Award - A person over the age of 50 who is new to technology and has overcome challenges to become an IT user.

Hobbies on the Net Award - An older person who uses the Internet to pursue their passion or hobby, or who uses IT for communication and social networking.

Golden IT Award - An individual over the age of 80 who uses technology to enhance their life.

Silver Surfer Award - An older person who embraces the Internet or technology with a sense of fun and adventure.

IT Tutor(s) of the Year Award - An individual or group who provides voluntary support to older learners.

Nominate someone you know!

The closing date for entry is Friday, 17 February 2017 and you make your nomination online.The awards ceremony takes place in eir’s Head Office, 1HSQ, on Tuesday, 28 March 2017.

Carolan Lennon, Managing Director, open eir said, “We are on a mission to not only get Ireland connected but to get Ireland maximising the benefits of high speed broadband. Our rural high-speed rollout programme is giving more Silver Surfers in communities across the country the ability to access high-speed broadband keeping families and friends connected no matter where they live or work. 

"We are delighted to work with Age Action by sponsoring the Silver Surfer awards. The Internet opens up a whole new world to users and we want to recognise, celebrate and reward all of the great things our Silver Surfers are doing.

"If you are a Silver Surfer or if you have a family member or friend who is using the Internet as part of their daily lives then please log onto the Age Action website and fill out the nomination form. By doing so you’re highlighting the benefits of surfing online to older people throughout Ireland.”

Eamon Timmins, Chief Executive, Age Action, said, “The open eir Silver Surfer Awards is all about driving home the benefit of being online to older people with the aim of getting more people to give it a go!  It is hard to believe but almost one in five adults have never used the internet – that is more than 550,000 people in Ireland!  The majority of these are older people with 53% (280,000) of these aged 60 to 74 never having been online.  Only 3% of those aged 75 and over have used the internet.

“We’re delighted that open eir has come on board to support the awards. Open eir is working hard to bring broadband to communities across Ireland and every day they extend their network to include more and more rural communities which in turn has a positive impact on our members lives.

"Not only are they facilitating access to high-speed broadband but they are also working closely with the Age Action team to ensure that our Silver Surfers know how to make the most of the exciting opportunities available online.”

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Raising the Roof - Homes for All Ages

Raise the Roof Rally for Housing 18 May

Preparing to Raise the Roof

Age Action, motivated by intergenerational solidarity, is joining the Raise the Roof campaign to tackle the continuing housing crisis that is affecting people of all ages.  People are being mobilised through trade unions and community organisations, to stage a major national rally on the housing crisis under the banner of Raise the Roof, in Dublin on Saturday May 18.

When people take an interest in what is happening in their local community, seek solutions to problems and initiate improvements they are being active citizens. Community is the foundational building block of society and housing is fundamental to community. Ireland’s housing crisis is rightly dominating public discourse as it undermines our ability to live with dignity as part of a community.  Ireland’s changing demographic brings with it a changing demand for homes that meet the needs of an ageing population.

The Government’s failure to deliver on a whole of Government approach to ageing and provide good quality social housing to meet demand has resulted in older people feeling subjected to negative, ageist language about their needs and wishes for suitable housing and health supports as is evidenced in the narrative on ‘down-sizing’ or ‘right-sizing’.

In the 60s and 70s the State implemented policies to support owner occupation of housing. People on lower incomes were able to buy their own homes which went some way to addressing wealth inequalities. According to Professor Tony Fahey, writing in Social Justice Ireland’s book ‘From Here to Where?’, by the year 2000 even low-income households owned substantial housing wealth and were less disadvantaged by inequalities in housing wealth than they were by inequalities in income.

Most of the growing population of young private renters today grew up in homes that were owned by their parents. Prof Fahey identified the essential features of secure long-term housing as being affordable, and having secure tenure. As he says, “today’s private rented housing has neither of these features”.

Looking at the future needs of an ageing population, for those aged 50-54 almost 10% were renting from private landlords at the time of Census 2016. It can be assumed that these people will continue in the rental market beyond their working years which leaves them in a vulnerable situation.

We encourage any and all of you who can to be active citizens and march with us on Saturday May 18 in a show of intergenerational solidarity. We will be gathering at 1pm at Parnell Square. You will find us behind an Age Action banner. At 2pm we will march down O'Connell Street towards Custom House Quay and join the Rally for Housing (location to be confirmed) by 3pm.

For more information about the campaign visit www.raisetheroof.ie

 

 

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