ORANGE 69-year-old Don Mahoney is one senior who has fully embraced technology.
In fact, his most prized possession is his iPhone, which he believes enables him to stay in touch with family, friends and happenings in the world.
So it is no wonder Mr Mahoney has backed a new training program to encourage more seniors to embrace technology.
Called Tech Savvy Seniors, the program aims to give seniors the confidence and skills to use technology and help bridge the gap between those using it and those who are yet to embrace it.
“The world’s technology certainly makes life so much easier,” Mr Mahoney said.
“Elderly people need to realise that today’s technology enables people to keep in touch with them who care about them, and that’s important as they get older.
“If people are not using technology it really is a shame because it’s much easier than it looks.”
Aging and Disability Services Minister Andrew Constance announced a partnership between Telstra and the NSW government who will provide the training.
“Giving seniors the confidence and skills to use technology is important so that they are able to participate in the digital community and economy,” he said.
Mr Constance said in NSW, just 53 per cent of older people had internet access at home and in regional areas that dropped to just 49 per cent.
He said 14.8 per cent of Orange residents were seniors, which meant of the 39,329 population, 5821 people were eligible for the training.
The Tech Savvy Seniors program provides low cost or free training to older people through community colleges.
It will cover courses on computers, tablets and smartphones, which promote social connections, easier access to information and improve wellbeing.
To find out more about the program, visit www.adhc.nsw.gov.au/aging.