¬†I recently read an article from the LA Times, that was run in the Living section of the Trenton Times on July 3rd. It was titled ‚ÄúGrandma, you’ve got mail‚Äù and told the story of seniors taking computer classes. The article was very interesting and there were some great quotes from both the student volunteers teaching the courses and the seniors taking advantage of them.
We‚Äôve known for awhile that there is a ‚Äúdigital divide‚Äù among the generations. Certainly there are some more mature users of such technology was email, cell phones and even Facebook, gasp! But there are also those older adults that either fear the computer, or just have no interest. One quote from the LA Times piece that really caught my attention was this, ‚ÄúIt scares me‚Äù, Edythe Eisenberg said of her iPad. ‚ÄúBut when I call my kids and grand kids they don‚Äôt call me back, so I have to use e-mail.‚Äù This really touched me as a sad aspect of our growing reliance on computer technology and non-verbal communication.
I think technology is great and offering seniors a chance to learn how to use and not fear some of these new technologies is also great, if they want them. However, those of us that are caught up in the fast paced world of communicating with our friends and colleagues through mostly email, text or online chats should not forget the seniors in our lives that want to hear from us. Your mother, father, grandmother or grandfather shouldn’t feel forced to use a technology they don‚Äôt like just because it is the only way to hear from you. Pick up the phone and say, ‚Äúhey, how are you today?‚Äù Don‚Äôt miss that chance to learn something, help out with something or just connect, with an actual voice. It will be good for them and for you.
Technology is good for those who like it, but let‚Äôs remember to communicate to each other in the best way possible, which sometimes may be using the old fashioned telephone or dropping by for a face to face. But by all means if you grandma wants to be on Facebook, teach her how to get online! Who knows, maybe she‚Äôll log on to match.com!
In 2010 NJFA has taken some big steps in the world of social media. It started with this blog, then a Facebook page, then a twitter account and now an online auction.
The popularity of using the internet to reach people is huge. ¬†We were hearing about it and seeing it everywhere.¬† Other organizations that we collaborate with were using sites like Facebook and Twitter so we took the plunge.
The NJFA blog is a place where we can spread the word about new information for seniors or post items we think seniors will find interesting. Keeping people informed about our events and publications is so easy with Facebook and Twitter. It is interesting to be connected to other advocacy groups online.
When the time came to plan our Annual Fall Fundraising event, we came up with the idea of an auction and thought the best way to do that would be online. So, to coincide with this year‚Äôs November 14th event in New Brunswick, we‚Äôve launched an online silent auction. The auction is hosted by http://www.32auctions.com/ and can be accessed by anyone by entering the Auction ID: NJFAauction and Auction password: agewell. You must create a free account with 32auctions in order to place a bid. The items up for bid for NJFA‚Äôs 1st Annual Online Auction include 4 tickets to The Addams Family on Broadway and dinner at Sardi‚Äôs Restaurant in NYC, 6 Riedel Crystal Wine Glasses, a Cuban painting, 4 Norman Rockwell collector plates, and several autographed baseball memorabilia from players like Rollie Fingers, Reggie Jackson and Tommy John. The auction will be open until noon on November 12th, so don‚Äôt miss out on your chance to bid!
NJFA‚Äôs 3rd Annual Fall Celebration will take place on Sunday, November 14th and starts with a 3 pm performance at The State Theater in New Brunswick, of the big band musical, ‚ÄúIn the Mood‚Äù and is followed by dinner and wine pairing at Daryl Wine Bar and Restaurant on George St. in New Brunswick. The event will be time for us to reflect on the work of NFJA throughout the year and to show appreciation to this year‚Äôs honoree‚Äôs, NFJA‚Äôs Founding Trustees, Rosemarie Doremus, Margaret Chester, Carl West and Susan Chasnoff. Information on sponsorships and tickets is available at http://www.njfoundationforaging.org/events.html or by calling our office at 609-421-0206.