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Cayman: Older Persons Month Seniors ride Social Media wave

Grand Cayman, 27 October 2021 – The ‘How to Use Social Media’ training session, on Monday, 25 October 2021, taught attendees how to “upload pictures to Whatsapp, online shop, and how to sign up and use Instagram and Pinterest.

One of a series of free workshops by the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) during Older Persons Month (OPM), the session was held at the Older Persons Active Ageing Centre (OPAAC) on McLendon Drive, George Town.

“This October’s theme of ‘Digital Equity For All Ages: Connect, Create, Contribute’ is geared to enriching older persons’ lives by promoting access and participation in the digital world,” said DCFS Director Mrs. Paulinda Mendoza-Williams.

“Social media sessions make the online world less daunting. The training sessions demystify a lot of the terminology involved in accessing social media, as well as providing our seniors with the necessary skills to take part in a lot of other activities which keep them engaged and socially active,” she explained.

During the Instagram familiarisation part of the training, attendees were shown how to activate the privacy setting, use the platform to search interests and hobbies, as well as how and when to use hashtags.

Apart from following celebrities, seniors learned that the platform can also be used to follow local businesses like CUC to get power outage alerts.

DCFS Social Work Manager, Mrs. Lois Kellyman said:  “In view of COVID, each workshop is run as a socially-distanced learning environment, so the capacity was 12 persons.

“The pandemic has had a profound impact on older persons. We know that this group has experienced a lot of issues related to having to spend more time than they used to at home with little company. It has also caused many of them who had once been uninterested in social media to embrace it as a way to keep in touch with family, while pursuing their interests with like-minded people across the world,” she added.

For Ms Sonia Spence attending the workshops has opened up a whole world of possibilities. “The sessions are run by friendly people who have really boosted my confidence to try out social media. I’ve still a long way to go but they’ve taught me so much,” she explained.

The last ‘How to Use Social Media’ workshop is on Friday, 29 October. To register for the 9.30-11:30am classes, contact: Dorline Welcome 925-4083 (George Town), Vanda Powery 916-7902 (West Bay), Carol Bodden 924-3309 (Bodden Town), Pat Hanlan 925-7451 (North Side) and Delmira Bodden 925-5543 (East End).


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