Unsung Heroes #306

Bob Weingarten writes:

Many Senior Center members have problems using computers.

They ask their more savvy technical friends or their grandchildren to help — but not all issues can be resolved that way.

I had a problem recently with my PC operating system. The audio input didn’t work, although I had the appropriate hardware.

I spent hours trying to fix this problem using internet searches, but couldn’t solve it.

I read about the Senior Center “Tech Help” program, so I schedules a meeting with one of the students. They are available to help with issues from signing in, password reset and downloading and uploading files, to hardware and software problems.

The students are seniors Apurv Sharma, Connor Ng and Mikhail Mikhalchuk.

(Photos/Bob Weingarten)

All volunteer their time. There is no cost to the service, which is available to all members on Thursdays and Friday afternoons.

No one should be embarrassed to ask for help.

I retired from IBM after 30 years working in software: designing, coding, analyzing large systems operating and application systems. I ended my career there as director of the IBM Japan Software Development Center with 350 employees.

After leaving IBM I spent an additional 3 years in Tokyo creating, organizing, developing, outfitting  and operating an internet host and management company. So I have considerable experience in software and hardware — but mostly high0end systems and applications software, not PC0based.

Connor solved my problem of not being able to obtain audio support on my PC, although I had the hardware, within 10 minutes. I was very impressed with his assistance and knowledge and I highly recommend others to use this Tech Help service.

Connor also assisted Senior Center member Marie Coppola, with her technical issue. She calls it “a great program for young people helping older people.”

Senior Center director Wendy Petty adds, “We are very fortunate to have these wonderful Staples High School students volunteer their time. They are incredibly knowledgeable, and offer their dedicated support with so much kindness and patience.”

Congratulations and thanks to this week’s Unsung Heroes: Connor, Apurv and Mikhail, and all previous “Tech Help” volunteers. Your intergenerational work is greatly appreciated, and very inspiring!

Do you know an Unsung Hero? Email nominations to 06880blog@gmail.com.

(Unsung Heroes is a weekly “06880” feature. If you’re inspired by them — or by this blog — please consider a contribution to help keep local journalism alive. Just click here. Thank you!)

6 responses to “Unsung Heroes #306

  1. Many thanks to Bob Weingarten and 06880 for honoring and publicizing the public service provided by the Tech Help volunteers.
    Having had a childhood profoundly enriched by elders in my neighborhood and now, as an elder myself, I know the intrinsic value of multi-generation relationships. In a word: Priceless.

    Gloria Gouveia

  2. Thanks, this is great info!

  3. so many hard working thoughtful staples students.

  4. Thank you Bob for sharing your experience and your thoughtful write-up of this amazing program at the Senior Center.

  5. Thanks you Bob for bringing this story to us and the good work the tech team do at the senior center.

  6. Janette Kinnally

    thank you Bob for writing about the kids and the invaluable opportunity for intergenerational sharing of information – I volunteered for a year doing tech services at the senior center with my son and then it led to me getting more involved and becoming a board member. It is so important to be involved and have our kids be involved in the community. Hopefully more kids will volunteer since these Staples seniors will be going off to college next year.

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