Lifelong learning is often credited with the benefits of enhancing our understanding of the world around us, providing us with more and better opportunities and improving our quality of life. Moreover, the concept of lifelong learning is valued because it also supports other positive attributes such as: social inclusion; active citizenship; personal development; and self-sustainability. In its efforts to continue offering lifelong learning opportunities in the digital context, the Malta Communications Authority kicked-off a new Erasmus+ project called ICT 4 the Elderly. This exciting new project aims at enhancing the digital skills of the elderly, create awareness about Internet use among the elderly and their communities, networking and capacity-building of project partners and stakeholders involved. The partners for this project hail from five different countries namely: Malta through the Malta Communications Authority (as lead); Belgium through All Digital; Slovenia through Simbioza Genesis; Switzerland through Ynternet.org; and Germany through Stiftung Digitale Chancen.
One of the key planned outputs of this project is to have a more digitally inclusive elderly society. A society that makes use of the Internet and reaps its benefits. This project’s consortium will thus, work to compile a set of best practices and open educational resources, translating into one training manual, supporting 30 hours of practical training. An Online Academy will be providing the participants with any assistance required during practicing time, which can take place from anywhere around the world. The training manual shall also include training scenarios to ensure that participants be able to relate to Internet use.
The project shall put the outputs to test during two international piloting events that will be held in Malta and Germany. Such events will offer 24 participants from all participating countries, the opportunity to play an active and beneficial role. Successful project participants will then act as ambassadors of the project and will be endowed the task to promote the project's results, the Erasmus+ programme and the use of the Internet in general among their respective communities to ensure long-term sustainability of the project.
The project shall end with the presentation of a report which will consist of a collection of recommendations for stakeholders and policy makers about the digital divide for the elderly and ways how policy makers can improve upon this experience.
The kick off meeting which was held in Malta on the 13th and 14th November, brought all partners on the table to chart a course for the implementation of the project during its lifespan, in all the five partnering countries and to ensure that the set KPIs will be successfully met.
We invite you to not only to stay tuned for more news from #ICT4theElderly but to also adhere to Henry Ford’s famous mantra that “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.”