Older adults master cell phones through program

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Although 77% of older adults have a cell phone, only 18% are comfortable learning to use it, according to research.

Aiming to change that situation, DoSomething.org, a global social change organization for young people (college aged or younger), and the AARP Foundation's Mentor Up program, a reverse mentoring program whereby younger people try to make a difference in the lives of older adults, have joined forces for the third time for Grandparents Gone Wired.

Through Jan. 31, young people can sign up at GrandparentsGoneWired.org and will receive tips on five ways to teach older adults how to make the most of their smartphone:

  1. Emojis and texting,
  2. Cameras and selfies,
  3. Video chat,
  4. Voicemail and
  5. Social media apps.

Young people who sign up for the campaign and upload a photo showing that they taught an older adult how to use a smartphone are eligible to win a $10,000 scholarship.

“Grandparents Gone Wired gives young people a chance to spend time with the older adults in their lives and teach them a new skill,” Naomi Hirabayashi, chief marketing officer at DoSomething.org, said in a statement. “When older adults learn how to text like their grandkids, it makes them feel more connected and in the loop with what's going on in their lives.”

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