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Basic Computer and Internet Job and Volunteer Search Skills - eTrain Program

Jefferson County Public Library

Innovation Leader: Cindy Phillips, Online and Outreach Manager, cindy.phillips@jeffcolibrary.org

Problem Statement

The number of people 60 and older in Jefferson County is expected to double in the next 20 years. In the spring of 2008, JCPL joined a county-wide Aging Well project sponsored by the Department of Human Services. Aging Well is a strategic planning project focusing on what Jefferson County needs to do to prepare for the increase in seniors in the next 20 years. As part of the effort, JCPL now participates in a task force on Social and Civic Engagement. In its community assessment, the committee identified a need for classes tailored to seniors to address the specific needs of a rising number of older adults seeking employment and volunteer opportunities. We determined that many older adults have been out of the job and volunteer search market for some time and lack the computer skills they need to identify and qualify for opportunities.

Innovation

Basic Computer and Internet Job and Volunteer Search Skills Program. In 2010, JCPL partnered with the Jefferson County Aging Well project and Rose Community Foundation to develop and provide a unique training opportunity to area seniors. This innovative program uses the Library’s eTrain mobile computer training lab to provide on-site training to non-profit and faith-based organizations serving senior populations (age 50 and over). Training is offered in basic computer and Internet search skills to help seniors identify job and volunteer opportunities online. This program encourages seniors to learn news skills, engage with their communities and stay socially connected.

Progress

This program has proven to be immensely popular. In the first quarter of 2010 alone, we have partnered with 14 community organizations to provide 26 classes to more than 140 seniors, and we already have another 35 classes scheduled through July. Alison Joucovsky, Program Coordinator for Jewish Family Service Colorado Senior Connections, has this to say about the program: “I can’t tell you how grateful we are for this program. Our seniors love it, love it, love it!”