Jamestown-area seniors recently received recognition at an award ceremony at the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging, Jamestown branch.
Dr. Mary Ann Spanos, Office for Aging director; Linda Spaulding, Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) director; and Margaret Anderson, peer coach, awarded certificates of achievement along with red carnations to 25 senior citizens who had successfully completed the Generations On-Line computer training program.
Dr. Spanos addressed the graduates as guest speaker. She also read a congratulatory letter from Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.
Anderson was recognized for training a total of 195 students at the Jamestown site to date. She read a poem entitled "The Computer Swallowed Grandma." Graduation cake and tea were served and door prizes awarded.
This free training program is offered to regional senior citizens by the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging. It is a self-paced, online tutorial using the Generations On-Line registered software program. Seniors complete the training in approximately four sessions with the assistance of a peer coach.
Generations On-Line is based in Philadelphia and founded by Tobey Gordon-Dichter, a former vice president of communication and public affairs at a health care company. Seeing a large gap in age between those who were technologically literate and those who were not, Dichter retired from her career to create Generations On-Line software. The software connects seniors to not only the Internet but to online forums, where they can talk and answer questions about the past that have been submitted by school children. Skills learned include understanding how to manage a mouse and keyboard in order to use them to progress to learning about email and navigating the Internet.
This Digital Inclusion training program was initiated July 1, 2009. To date, approximately 700 senior citizens have taken this training at six sites located throughout the region. Interested persons should contact the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging in Mayville at 753-4471 to register. For more information, contact Betty Crowell, training coordinator, at 224-0822.