Generations Together – national digital literacy program for the elderly
Period of implementation of the project:
Phase 1: November 2020 – May 2021
Phase 2: May 2021 – December 2021
The Covid-19 pandemic changed everyone’s lives and asked for numerous adjustments to protect our loved ones. At the same time, we all became painfully aware of how important personal contacts and socializing are, and how much we need them to function. Due to c-19 restrictions elderly in nursing homes were forced to drastically limit visitations. Social contacts, which played a key role in the lives of residents of these homes, had to give the way to a growing sense of loneliness and isolation, which was especially difficult for them and their families pre-Christmas.
To put things into perspective, Croatia has a rapidly aging population with 20% citizens older than 65, with those in nursing homes hit the hardest as they were cut-off from everybody. The fact they lacked any digital skills made their situation even worse.
So, Croatian Telecom decided to help them in the best way we could – enabling the elderly and their loved ones to stay connected.
Aware of the problem in the nursing homes, Croatian Telecom, in cooperation with Volunteer Center Zagreb, launched a national digital literacy education program for the elderly and donated tablets and free internet for 30 nursing homes across Croatia that care for 2000+ residents.
Members of the Croatian Telecom’s Volunteer Club prepared easy-to-understand educational videos to help senior citizens learn how to use various digital tools and this allowed them to connect with their families and friends. Video materials are continuously upgraded with HT’s volunteers holding regular calls with the residents.
We also organized a survey in nursing homes to get the public aware of the issue (53% respondents felt lonely, 80% missed families) and get them engaged.
We are proud that this project connected more than 1300 nursing homes residents with their friends and families and that for the first time in their lives they made over 2000 video-calls.
The dedicated website we set-up recorded more than 130,000 page views (40% above expectations).
Public got engaged, and we got 15 applications (50% above target) for the nursery homes to be included in the next phase.
And this is just quantitatively metrics, with the most important one coming in the form of joy and gratitude by residents and their families for us being there for them and helping them remain in contact, but also for us opening a whole new digital world for them.
Company: Hrvatski Telekom d.d.
About the company:
Hrvatski Telekom d.d. is a Croatian telecommunications company. The company offers fixed telephony, broadband internet, IPTV, and mobile telephony as its main services.
Sustainable Development Goals
Croatian Telecom (HT)
Volunteer Center Zagreb