The Infocomm Media Development Authority (“IMDA”) has expanded its programmes to help more seniors receive the knowledge, training and support they need to use technology to stay engaged, productive and entertained during this circuit breaker period. This is part of IMDA’s continual efforts in enhancing online accessibility to enable individuals, especially seniors, to carry out their daily tasks and social activities from their homes.
“The face-to-face programmes supporting seniors in their digital journeys, like the Digital Clinics, have been suspended during this circuit breaker period. IMDA has thus worked with our industry and community partners to explore alternative modes of helping our seniors acquire digital skills, which will support their digital lifestyles during the circuit breaker period and beyond.” said Ms Koh Li-Na, Assistant Chief Executive, IMDA.
New content and activities for seniors
To reach seniors in the comfort of their homes, IMDA has partnered NLB and Mediacorp to develop season 3 of the “Learn Together With Me” show, an 8-part series where host Dennis Chew and his celebrity guests will share tips on common digital services and applications like making video calls with your family, using PayNow for cashless payment, reading online, and how to use teleconsultation services to see a doctor online. The programme will be aired on Channel 8 at 2.30pm on weekdays between 20 to 29 May.
IMDA is also collaborating with live stream star Max Kee, a wholesaler of Lian Huat Seafood, to make online shopping more relatable to seniors. Using the concept of selling fresh seafood – an item close to many seniors’ hearts – through Facebook Live, it seeks to build seniors’ interest to go digital and also to help them understand the convenience of using digital tools to carry out their daily activities and the ease of purchasing groceries online. Through the Tekka Online Market Facebook, seniors will be able to buy and make cashless payment using PayNow for the food products offered by the three participating merchants from Tekka market – Chia’s Vegetables Supply, Haji M N Shahul Hameed Marketing and 81 Sheng Yu (81 生魚). These merchants will be selling online on 5 and 12 May, from 12pm onwards at www.facebook.com/pg/tekkaonlinemarket.
Helping seniors pick up digital skills with Digital Pod Learning Series
Seniors keen to improve their digital knowledge and skills can now tap on a variety of free webinars or specially curated content for skills upgrading. IMDA’s online Digital Pod Learning Series, available from 19 May, will offer 40 short classes streamed live online twice weekly, to equip seniors with essential digital skills. The series will cover topics ranging from how to tap on accessibility features on their phone, how to use social media, coding, photo editing, protecting themselves from online risks, etc. Developed in partnership with the Central Provident Fund Board, Facebook, Google, Grab, Microsoft, Salesforce and TOUCH Community Services, IMDA expects to engage 8,000 seniors through the Digital Pod programme over the next five months. Seniors who are interested can visit www.imsilver.sg/dp for details. Seniors can also get step-by-step guides or select from a suite of online resources from IM Silver website at www.imsilver.sg/godigital.
Online one-to-one assistance for seniors on basic digital skills
Seniors who wish to go digital and need help with apps or services can now easily book an online ‘consultation’ session to speak to a volunteer and receive help for their digital needs.
The Virtual Digital Clinic, built on IMDA’s well-received Digital Clinic programme1, is conceptualised in partnership with the National Library Board, Cognizant, Grab and Microsoft. The Virtual Digital Clinic, conducted over the Microsoft Teams video platform, will provide seniors one-to-one guidance on basic features of commonly used mobile apps or phone settings. The Virtual Digital Clinic will run weekly for 12 weeks, from 15 May until 18 July2. These sessions are available in English, Malay, Mandarin and Tamil language. Seniors can select and book a session based on their language preference. IMDA expects to engage 40 seniors via the virtual sessions weekly. For more details about the virtual digital clinics, visit www.imsilver.sg/vdc
The Digital Clinic initiative, first launched in 2017, is the only digital readiness programme to offer seniors one-to-one assistance in using their smartphones. More than 15,000 seniors have benefited from the outdoor clinics held weekly at public libraries, and across Merdeka Generation Package roadshows in community spaces. The outdoor sessions have been discontinued in view of the circuit breaker measures to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Depending on demand, IMDA will consider continuing the Virtual Digital Clinic beyond July.