College college students are instructing their elders about expertise. Picture: Shutterstock
Highschool college students will educate older Australians learn how to use smartphones and browse the web beneath a brand new federal authorities initiative.
The Younger Mentors program was developed by the eSafety Commissioner.
The free mentoring scheme will see secondary school-aged younger Australians instructing these aged over 50 years previous about digital expertise in one-on-one periods.
Minister for Communications Michelle Rowland mentioned that for older Australians, the mentoring program will assist to construct confidence in utilizing expertise, ship a larger sense of independence, present extra entry to companies and scale back emotions of loneliness.
For the younger mentors, Rowland mentioned it can give them a possibility to develop beneficial instructing, communication and management expertise whereas additionally making a optimistic social contribution.
“The Younger Mentors program helps bridge the digital divide by connecting two teams that have been notably impacted via the COVID-19 pandemic – older Australians and younger individuals,” Rowland mentioned.
“By pairing older Australians with youngsters to construct their digital expertise and confidence, this system encourages real connection between generations whereas making the net world a safer place we are able to all take pleasure in.”
Group organisations or teams will accomplice with secondary colleges to coordinate the one-hour mentoring periods, to be delivered weekly over six weeks. These periods shall be individually tailor-made to the wants of the older learner.
The federal authorities has invited colleges, libraries, councils, aged residential care services and different neighborhood teams to get entangled with the intergenerational program.
The Younger Mentors scheme is a part of the Be Related program, which empowers older Australians to entry digital expertise and on-line companies, and is run in partnership between the Division of Social Companies, eSafety Commissioner and Good Issues Basis Australia.
The brand new scheme will assist to maintain older Australians secure on-line, Minister for Social Companies Amanda Rishworth mentioned.
“We all know older Australians could be susceptible on-line and the Be Related program is a method that seeks to enhance the digital literacy of older Australians and defend them within the digital house,” Rishworth mentioned.
The Be Related initiative was launched in 2017 and features a devoted web site with data and interactive instruments and assets, and free entry to personalised assist and mentoring.
It goals to show older Australians the fundamentals of expertise, corresponding to utilizing a digital system, being secure on-line, sending emails, utilizing social media, purchasing on-line, utilizing myGov and sharing pictures with buddies and households.
It changed the earlier Broadband for Seniors authorities program.
An evaluation of this system in early 2021 discovered that it’s having a “vital affect” on constructing the abilities, confidence and security expertise of older Australians, and that it “represents an acceptable, efficient and environment friendly funding within the digital inclusion of older Australians”.
This system now has a community of greater than 3,000 companions and 9,800 digital mentors delivering coaching to greater than 580,000 learners.