COVID-19 MAY BRING TECHNOLOGY HARDSHIPS TO SENIORS
Covid-19 has changed everything about our way of life. Since we cannot go to school, work, social gatherings, or even church, we have been forced to learn new ways to interact with each other. Of course, younger generations have embraced technology since birth, but many of us remember when microwave ovens and “mobile” phones were ideas out of science fiction movies.
It has been harder for some than others, but all of us have probably learned something new over the last few weeks. Even those of us who thought we were somewhat tech savvy have realized that we were only scratching the surface. Yet, while everyone has been adapting to this change; probably no group has been hit harder than seniors.
We all know seniors who love technology and have embraced it; but, many of our seniors have not embraced it. My father never embraced it and insisted on having an actual newspaper to hold in his hands. He was very upset when he learned that some of the newspapers in the area were limiting their printing to once a week. Online newspapers, Facetime, watching a church service online, email . . . forget that, and he never got texting down!
Let’s all remember our seniors. Give them a phone call and try to walk them through the technology changes. Do whatever you can to help them adapt to these sudden changes and be able to connect with others. The healthcare workers at our local senior residences deserve a special “thank you” for using their personal phones to connect residents with their families.
Seniors may need you to purchase the smartphone, the iPad, or the tablet and set it up for them (just be sure you sanitize it before you give it to them and stay the proper distance away from them at all times). It is also a great idea to bookmark sites that they may want to visit, such as their church. Give them a lot of guidance, patience and, probably, written instructions in an easy-to-read size.
We have a wonderful community. Together we can overcome these challenges.
Stay safe and Happy Easter!
John and Melanie Holliman
P.S. This blog post will also appear in a printed Clarion newspaper your seniors can hold in their hands.