SINGAPORE – Another 47 seniors have been appointed as ambassadors of digital lifestyles, in hopes of inspiring more of their peers to embrace technology and adopt practices such as using e-payment methods and shopping online.
They join the 234 other members of the Silver Infocomm Wellness Ambassador (Siwa) programme, which was introduced eight years ago and has been helping hundreds of seniors to understand digital tools.
In a virtual meeting with the new ambassadors on Saturday (June 27), Minister for Communications and Information S, Iswaran underscored the importance of their ability to support fellow seniors, who might be anxious about technology.
“Having gone through the process of learning digital skills themselves, they better understand the concerns of other seniors and can help make their learning journeys a lot more fun and a lot less stressful,” said Mr Iswaran.
The 281 ambassadors under the voluntary Siwa programme are appointed by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and People’s Association Active Ageing Council.
Anyone aged at least 50 can be an ambassador, as long as he is active with IT and can encourage his peers to actively adopt digital technology.
Those interested in the programme can nominate themselves or their friends to apply for it online.
The IMDA sad in a statement on Saturday that the Siwa programme complements the Singapore Digital Office (SDO) that was introduced on May 31.
This SDO will recruit 1,000 digital ambassadors by the end of June to help seniors and stallholders at hawker centres and wet markets learn how to use digital tools – skills which the Government says are more important than ever, given disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
On Saturday, Mr Iswaran stressed the importance of community involvement in helping Singapore embrace technology.
“Going digital should be a priority, and as our way of life becomes more digital, more in our community are also reaching out and putting up their hands to help one another go digital,” he said.