Project financed by Fondazione del Sud and promoted in partnership with Auser and Anteas in Basilicata, Calabria, Campania, Puglia, Sardinia, and Sicily
Digital literacy for 8,000 senior citizens in just two years, from Scampia in the Napoli hinterlands to Giarre on the slopes of Mt. Etna, grandparents have become skilled users of the information technology they use to combat solitude with help from 1,500 student tutors from 37 different schools.
The objective of the Southern Italian Grandparents on the Internet two-year plan promoted by Fondazione Mondo Digitale in partnership with Auser and Anteas senior community centers with support from Fondazione del Sud, is to promote the application of the Grandparents on the Internet intergenerational learning model also in Southern Italy, where senior citizens often suffer greater alienation. Students from all kinds of school instruct senior citizens in using computers and navigating in Internet under the supervision of expert teachers in Basilicata, Calabria, Campania, Puglia, Sardinia, and Sicily.
The model that has been successfully applied in another seven Italian regions (Abruzzo, Emilia Romagna, Lazio, Lombardia, Marche, Piemonte and Umbria) and in four other European nations (Belgium, Ireland, Romania, and Spain) is applied in Southern Italy enriched with a number of significant innovations, such as the new e-Med manual written in large-size print dedicated to online healthcare opportunities, and the intergenerational meetings open to the public on cross-media and digital terrestrial television. Although the objectives for the senior citizens, student tutors, and teacher coordinators are truly ambitious, they will be supported by three organizations specialized in the social inclusion of the elderly: FMD, Auser, and Anteas.
After obtaining a Southern Italian Grandparents on the Internet “Master’s degree” senior citizens will be able to train their contemporaries at Auser and Anteas senior citizen community centers, providing those with less experience with assistance in completing online procedures. As many as 6 ”Recycle shops” will also be set up, one for each Italian region, where course graduates can renovate computers thrown away by companies for use at senior community centers after testing. All the experience gleaned from the project will be channeled into an online learning platform to be enlivened with the personal success stories and testimony of its participants, and also research work and real-time evaluation methods.
The project’s operative centers are the schools and the 22 local branches of the Auser and the Anteas senior community centers that provide to coordination. The centers are equipped with a multi-function work-station (with 3 networked computers, a printer, headsets, webcams, and microphones) to manage, monitor, and document the project.
The Southern Italian Grandparents on the Internet project is funded by Fondazione con il Sud in the context of Special and Innovative Projects interventions.