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Consumer Technology Association Foundation supports Virtual Senior Academy with 50K grant

The CTA Foundation recently approved a $50,000 grant to the Jewish Healthcare Foundation to increase participation in the Virtual Senior AcademyTM and grow its Tech Buddy program. The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) Foundation, headquartered in Arlington, VA, focuses on using technology to improve the quality of life of seniors.

Launched in 2018 in partnership with local nonprofit Computer Reach, the Tech Buddy program matches older adults with volunteers who help them navigate the platform and take interactive classes. The Virtual Senior AcademyTM has partnered with local universities, businesses, and nonprofit organizations to recruit and train Tech Buddies. To date, JHF Program Associate Rachel Goldberger, MPH, MSW, and staff from Computer Reach have led three trainings that focused on navigating the Virtual Senior AcademyTM, addressing gaps in technology access, and recognizing signs of social isolation in older adults. Computer Reach, a global volunteer organization with a chapter in western PA, works to bridge the digital divide by providing refurbished computer technology and digital literacy training to people in need. Computer Reach is lending computers and mobile hot spots to Virtual Senior AcademyTM participants. So far, 35 individuals have been trained and deployed to help local seniors get signed up on the program and take classes. More than 100 individuals have expressed interest becoming a Tech Buddy. The next training will take place in July at the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public Health.

If you are interested in becoming a Tech Buddy, or would like more information on the July training, contact Rachel (Goldberger@jhf.org) or call 412-594-2579 for more information. 

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