Wagga’s senior community will have a chance to participate in a Tech Savvy Seniors program at the Wagga Wagga City Library every Friday from now to December.
The program has been backed and funded by the NSW Government and Telstra, allowing older members of the community to receive free and accessible classes where they can ask questions and learn tips about modern technology.
The digital literacy classes will look to support people with accessibility to smartphones, Wi-Fi, iPads, tablets, computers, laptops, emails, and online shopping.
The first block of classes began earlier this month and will continue until 22 September, while the second block will begin on 13 October and run until 8 December.
Library Services Acting Manager Michael Scutti recognises this program as an invaluable asset to our community.
“Every day more services are moving to being accessible exclusively online,” Mr Scutti said. “For seniors in particular, digital literacy is essential for accessing services and for maintaining independence.
“The response from participants is always positive. A lot of our participants are mostly self-taught so they may not be aware of certain features of their devices; sometimes it’s simple tips – for example how to set your screen timeout.”
Technology supervisors will guide participants on how to use their own personal devices during the two-hour classes, and if participants are unable to bring their own, the library can supply them.
Groups of up to 12 will have questions answered and a morning tea will follow each session.
Mr Scutti said the demand for these classes had changed over time as technology continued to develop, and the program had repeatedly adapted to suit the needs of today’s climate.
“Ten years ago, we would run a lot of beginner-level computer classes: how to use a mouse and keyboard, creating a word document, very basic elements. We rarely run those classes now, as most participants use tablets and phones, as opposed to laptops and PCs.
“The baseline skill level of seniors has also noticeably shifted upwards over time, along with their confidence.
“Even five years ago, most participants would baulk at any online shopping, viewing it as far too risky. Because we have a strong focus on online safety, the online shopping class is now one of our most popular.”
Bookings are essential for each class. To book a spot, call the library on 02 6926 9700 or go here.