Way back in October 1997 - Kate Carnell, then the ACT's Chief Minister, opened the Senior Citizen's Internet training Centre at the Woden Town Centre Public Library. To start with there were 6 or 8 systems for use by the seniors and their trainers. The systems were very poor ones - probably Public Service outcasts. They were quickly updated by the Library which reduced the number of systems dedicated to seniors to 4 - the others going for use by the general public. They were all connected to a very dodgy ACT Government network via a small bandwidth 'pipe' to a poorly performing Internet connection. The hardware, network, and Internet access has improved a lot since then.
The training was undertaken by the Canberra PC Users Group, by volunteers drawn from within the group. A few of the original volunteers still teach on several days per month. I did a 7 year stint, but am currently on at least a years 'sabbatical' as I'm flat out on PC Users group stuff.
It's a very rewarding task to teach the Seniors. The current hours are from 10am to Midday on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Two sessions per day, 10am to 11am and 11am to Midday. The Topic is primarily the Internet, Browsing and Web based Email. But also range from buying and installing systems for home use. What is a computer? Word processing, searching the web, etc. We try to always provide 1 on 1 training and the price is right - Free!
A list of current volunteers is available here and a 'roster' for Mondays is here. But you will need a password to access - this is to avoid Webbots 'harvesting' Email addresses etc. Send an Email to Paul Hooper at this address if you need the password
John Saxon - 1 Feb 2005