Rojan Pyakurel is BallyCara’s fantastic Digital Engagement Officer. His passion is to help solve real world problems and bridge the digital gap by connecting with people. As October 1st is the UN’s International Day of Older Persons and the 2021 theme is ‘Digital Equity for All Ages’, Rojan has kindly reflected on his experiences delivering Tech Mentoring sessions for BallyCara clients.
As part of my role as Digital Engagement Officer with BallyCara, I perform in-home visits (“Tech-Mentoring sessions”) with our clients. In the past month, I have had multiple sessions with ten different clients under different programs such as HomeCare Packages, Residential Care, Commonwealth Home Support Program, Village, etc. No two sessions are the same and everybody, being the unique person they are, have different interests, goals, digital literacy score, problems and needs. In a nutshell the tech help can be classified as troubleshooting devices, digital mentoring/education, and tech/gadget consultations.
The experience so far has been amazing. I did not expect the differences in digital capabilities of the clients that I visited. Some clients just wanted to fix their computer, print a document, or call someone through their new phone, while some wanted advice on the best smart watches, help with installing smart home systems, etc. My understanding of digital literacy of seniors has deepened. I have got invaluable perspective from how seniors view the world and how they perceive the rapid advancements of technology in today’s world.
Scheduling a pre-appointment phone call helped me establish a relationship and trust with each client. I asked them a few questions about their expectations from the appointment and what goals they wanted to achieve. I found out that clients enjoyed both the tech education and social conversations with me. Many of them stated that it is wonderful to have a digital help service available.
It has been a good learning experience so far. Tech-savvy seniors had complex problems which were challenging for me. I adopted a mindset of trying to devise solutions with them being involved in the decision-making process. Seniors who were not as tech-savvy had simple problems which were challenging in a different way. I adopted a patient approach, ensured clear and simple communication, and empathy. I enjoyed getting to know each client and their stories, daily life activities, and interests.
COVID-19 has accelerated the migration of a lot of services towards the digital avenues such as e-shopping, government tasks, e-banking, teleconferencing, telehealth, etc. The issue with this is that there is an engrained expectation that all seniors are equipped with both the resources and the skills to navigate the digital world. I have experienced a major need of a professional digital help service for seniors today and this need will continue to expand as the technology advances in the coming years.
I find my work meaningful because I am involved in solving real-life problems with technology for seniors. My experiences have taught me to adopt a growth-mindset. The one-on-one sessions with my clients have given me a new outlook on my life. I have also grown my competency in the role through the hands-on learning experiences and implementation of the research I have conducted.
To find out more about Tech Mentoring sessions, and how BallyCara can support your technological learning call us on 1300 272 222.
Categorised in: BallyCara Blog
This post was written by Emily Spagnolo