Alaska seniors learn to use new technologies

Seniors have a stereotype of being behind the times when it comes to technology; whether it’s not knowing about recent innovations, or simply not being interested, retirees tend to be painted with one brush.

But as reported recently in the Homer Tribune newspaper, one group of seniors in Homer, Alaska have been paired with local high school volunteers who are helping their older cohorts learn how to use electronic music devices.

The devices were purchased by the Atlantic Institute on Aging, based in New Brunswick, which purchased them for residents of Homer Senior Citizens, a local assisted living community, plus 14 others across the United States.

“They want to see if it’s true that music improves cognitive capacity for seniors,” Karen Kelly, Homer Senior Citizen’s executive director, told a group of residents, according to the newspaper.

A number of the seniors told the Homer Tribune that they were looking forward to learning about their new music players, which would allow them to store up to 400 songs, as well as carrying the devices with them, unlike older music players like records. Staff members will manage the new program.

Homer is a town of 5,000 people in southwest Alaska, near Anchorage.