The Silver Surfer Awards are in their 8th year and our very own Margaret Culloty from Firies in Co. Kerry has been shortlisted!
You'd be forgiven for assuming the beaches of Kerry are where the surfing takes place, in fact the aim of the Silver Surfer Awards is to raise awareness among older people of the benefits of being online and to encourage those who have not gone online to give it a try.
Almost 1 in 5 adults have never used the internet - that’s more than 550,000 people. The majority of these are older people with 53% (280,000) of those aged 60 to 74 never having been online. As of the National Digital Strategy report published in July 2013 (pdf), only 3% of those aged 75 and over had used the internet.
Aldi Community Games introduced an Online Registration System in 2014 and removed all need for completion of handwritten panel forms. While the system was designed to be user-friendly and functional it still requires some IT skills and well, like everything, a bit of practice and training.
Margaret embraced the new system with open arms and not only that, she is helping her Area Secretaries use it too! We had a chat with Margaret today about this "very big deal" (in our opinion ;-)):
“It was a great surprise to be nominated. I started using a computer many years ago to type letters, but gradually began to use it for emails and creating the Kerry athletics programme. Now, we have a Kerry Community Games website for results, a Facebook page, and the national online system as well. It makes life so much easier and there’s a sense of achievement when you learn to do something new. I would tell anyone who is hesitant about using a computer to just give it a try – most of it is trial and error but you’ll get there in the end and it will be worth it.”
We are so proud of Margaret and fingers crossed for her at the finals on 28th March when the winners are announced.
For more information on this initiative see Age Action's page.
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