Seniornet was first established in Wellington in 1992.
The concept of SeniorNet emerged in 1986 in the USA from a research project at the University of San Francisco. The project’s aim was to determine if computers and telecommunications could enhance the lives of older adults. SeniorNet brings older adults and technology together in a friendly, fun and stress-free way. It’s for people over the age of 50 who’d like to learn more about technology and what it can do for them. Small, well organised classes, with volunteer tutors, about the same age as their students, run courses not only an introduction to computers and surfing the Net but also a vast range of subjects.
Taupo SeniorNet a brief history
In the late 1990’s, one of our members and his wife shifted to Taupo from New Plymouth. They had been involved with SeniorNet there but the nearest club for them now was Rotorua. They travelled there a few times, but this was not really satisfactory.
Early in 2000 they somehow teamed up with a local lady, Dorothy Westerman, who decided to call a public meeting to determine interest in forming a SeniorNet Club in Taupo. They had hoped to attract about 30 people, but in excess of 100 showed up and SeniorNet Taupo Inc was formed.
The original Executive Committee was:
Dorothy Westerman: Chairperson
Neville Davies: Secretary
Alison Landle: Treasurer
Marie Cairns: Course Registrar
Len Malcolm: Courses
Frank Hardy and Bill Harvey: Tutors Management
Wim Rademaker and Harry Lidington: Membership
Eric Huffman: Course notes production
Jean Blenkinsopp: Newsletter
Robbie Shearer: Social Convener
Ray Morrison, a non-committee member was part of a technical sub-committee.
At this point, there was no SeniorNet Federation in New Zealand, that was to come perhaps five years later, but Telecom were sponsors of the burgeoning SeniorNet network, and Grant Sidaway who worked for Telecom and was also a private “presenter” showed extreme interest and assisted the new Club in any way that he could. Telecom also became sponsors of Taupo SeniorNet Inc. The Federation is now a valuable parent body and helps clubs enormously.
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