In March, 2012, Seniornet reported that Seniors were the fastest growing demographic on the popular social media site, Facebook.
Some people found that surprising, there is an old perception that seniors have been left behind in the technological world, but this isn't true! Many seniors have become surprisingly technically savvy, and are fully engaged using social media - sharing and viewing pictures of their grandchildren, re-connecting with long lost friends from long ago school days and work places... even making new friends and engaging in new communities of shared interest.
If you know a senior who is not online - helping them navigate their way onto "the world wide web" can literally open up a whole new world for them - as well as reminding them a lot about people, places, and interests that once engaged them!
Not only can seniors reconnect with friends and co workers from different parts of their past that they have lost touch with, but they can use the internet to research past and new interests, keep in touch with and share their opinions about the news of the day, feel connected to clubs and organizations, and so much more. They can also watch old movies and television shows that haven't been seen on TV for decades or more, bringing back lots of memories they can share with the young people in their lives!
Especially for seniors or elderly people who are less mobile, and often stuck at home, engaging online can relieve the loneliness, depression and hopelessness that many people report. Some seniors who either can't or no longer wish to participate in the work force have had success in creating new businesses online. Others find it rewarding to share their knowledge and help mentor younger people who can benefit from their experience. Others have found it very interesting to enroll in online courses, from fun to university level.
There are a million reasons for seniors to actively engage online -- so if you know a senior who isn't on the internet... spend an hour or two demystifying it all - show them how to log on, how to post, how to find their friends, how to research on Google...
You'll be giving them a key to a whole new world!
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Tracy Lamourie is the President and Creative Director of Lamourie Public Relations & Marketing. In that world, she represents clients as diverse as politicians, entertainment figures, newsmakers, ethical businesses and not for profit groups whose aims she supports. Tracy also has a lot of media experience - radio, TV, newspapers and new media. She’s worked at various times as a television host, television producer, and radio host. She’s also a human rights and social justice activist with a long history of work on various international and local issues Tracy and her work on various social justice issues have also been featured on television broadcasts as varied as CBC’s The Fifth Estate, Court TV, A & E, CTV across North America.