Marie Hogan from Birdhill in Tipperary was crowned the winner of the IT Tutor of the Year Award
A Tipperary woman has been named the 'IT Tutor of the Year' at the 2018 open eir Silver Surfer Awards in recognition of her volunteerism with Age Action.
Birdhill's Marie Hogan was crowned the winner of the 'IT Tutor of the Year Award' at a ceremony officially opened by Minister of State at the Department of Health with special responsibility for Mental Health and Older People Jim Daly T.D.
Since 2009 Marie has facilitated numerous training courses and one-to-one sessions and has fundraised to provide computers and computer equipment for the Milford Day Care Centre for the Older Adult.
The award which recognises the efforts of the hundreds of people across Ireland who volunteer with Age Action’s computer training programme, Getting Started was presented to Marie at a ceremony in eir’s Head Office by well-known fashion designer, TV and radio personality Brendan Courtney.
Marie has also been working with one resident for the past three years who has faced many health obstacles. Thanks to Marie’s weekly tutoring this resident has a new found sense of independence through technology, as she communicates with her family and catches up on her favourite shows on the RTE player.
John Church, CEO of Age Action, said: “We are proud to celebrate today some truly inspirational people. These Silver Surfers are challenging ageist stereotypes that the internet, social media and new technologies are only for young people. They’re not just doing so to improve their own lives but, in many cases, to assist their neighbours, support their communities and reach out to people who need help. We hope they will inspire thousands more like them to dust off the laptop or tablet sitting at home and get online. There is an entire world of information and entertainment waiting for them. And who knows, maybe some of those inspired by this year’s Silver Surfers will be joining us at next year’s awards.”
Carolan Lennon, CEO, eir said: “Today’s winners are a fantastic example of what can be achieved by embracing technology. We are delighted to support an initiative that celebrates older people and those who support them. The awards are a fantastic opportunity to shine a light on some of the remarkable ways that older people are taking advantage of the possibilities that connectivity offers. The variety of online activities celebrated today includes the adoption of technology into everyday life, building online communities and even piloting a flight simulator! Our Silver Surfers are ambassadors for a digital landscape and reinforce our belief that everyone should have access to a best in class broadband and mobile network.”
Minister Daly highlighted the benefits of older people engaging with technology, saying: “Developing technological skills is a great benefit as it can help nourish a sense of independence and in turn give older people increased confidence that they can take forward into all the other aspects of their lives.”
Minister Daly also congratulated all the open eir Silver Surfer award winners and nominees, noting that Age Action’s Getting Started Computer Training Programme, along with eir’s commitment to provide the best mobile and broadband network to every household and business across Ireland, is instrumental in helping older people experience the benefits that technology can bring to their everyday lives.