The Digital Seniors Hawke’s Bay Programme was developed as a result of a generous donation from the Harry Romanes Bequest and endorsed by Mrs. Beverly Romanes.

The Positive Ageing Trust was made aware of the fact that a number of older people in our community are living independently and often away from family members. The aim of the programme was to provide these people in Hawke’s Bay with an opportunity to learn computer skills which will enable them to stay connected to their family members as well as their friends.

Other computer literacy classes provided by different organisations in the community have been reported to be a little daunting to elderly, involving very rigid learning from a book structure and often involve a big number of participants which can dilute the effectiveness of the sessions.

The Pilot Programme was launched in Hastings at Heretaunga Seniors in 2015 with the full support and help from Heretaunga Seniors.

Programme outline:

  1. Session duration – two hours – a cup of tea to be offered after the first hour.
  2. Each course is ideally six weeks in duration with the opportunity for participants to repeat the course for consolidation and confidence building.
  3. Participant numbers- maximum of five. Participants are encouraged to bring their own computers to the classes. Course participants could be transported to the venue at a nominal fee.
  4. Programme content – to include email, word documents, attachments, Skype. Content is tailor-made to participant requests/needs. Basic resource booklet has been written by the tutors.
  5. Programme tutors are volunteers who donate their time to help seniors learn computer skills.
  6. The programme encouraged inter-generational teaching/learning environment. The tutors in Wairoa have been Wairoa College Duke of Edinburgh students. Digital Seniors Waipukurau courses have successfully used help from local EIT courses. Digital Seniors at Taradale RSA had fantastic help from year twelve students from Taradale High School.
  7. A basic Resource booklet has been written by the course supervisors. Each course has also tutor who looks after the course delivery, participant numbers and tutors. There is also a technical assistant who is very competent in computer technology and able to assist with seniors who bring their own devices to the courses.

The Digital Seniors Courses are running at present at Heretaunga Seniors Hastings. For further information please do not hesitate to contact us.