West Leeds: Live at Home scheme shows off its text appeal

IN TOUCH: Tracy Brierley with pensioners Eric and June Lawson.
IN TOUCH: Tracy Brierley with pensioners Eric and June Lawson.
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pensioners are getting texty in a bid to beat social isolation.

Members of Horsforth Live at Home scheme are being given lessons in how to use mobile phones in a bid to help them stay in touch with their families.

The weekly two-hour classes at Central Methodist Church teach them everything they need to know from how to answer calls, how to switch on their phones and how to send text messages.

The mobile group, which started in April, has seen dozens of members learn how to become more confident in staying mobile.

Horsforth Live at Home manager Tracy Brierley said: “It’s a complete beginners course.

“The sessions teach members of the scheme how to use their mobile phones, how to make calls, create text messages and set alarms for prompts for hospital appointments and medication reminders.

“We take using mobile phones for granted every day and for some older people they just don’t have the confidence to use them or they are scared they will press the wrong button.”

And the classes have proved so popular that four members have now agreed to be volunteers to help run the sessions for others.

During the sessions, members buddy up and practice sending text messages to one another when they go home.

Tracy added: “Members buddy up with someone else in the class.

“Many of them have never used a mobile before but it is something that is really easy and quite simple.

“A lot of members have said to me that they have made good friendships by coming to the classes.

“More and more older people are a lot more active and mobiles help them to stay in touch with their families and friends.”

Tracy is now hoping to run sessions next year to boost their skills and show members how to send picture messages and use the internet and blue tooth on their mobile phones.

27 October 2017.
The view from the top of Leeds Town Hall.
Leeds Civic Hall.

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