Singtel has unveiled an uplifting short film, as part of its annual festive tribute for Christmas. Titled “Seniors go digital too!”, the film tells the inspiring stories of three seniors who attended weekly digital clinics run by Singtel staff volunteers under its Digital Silvers programme. Refusing to let COVID-19 upend their lives, these seniors picked up digital skills that will help them stay connected and overcome the social distancing brought on by the pandemic.
The six-minute documentary-style film follows the journey of three protagonists (Lilian, Shirley and Andrew), capturing how they learn to use smart devices, surf the internet, stay in touch with loved ones online, and make cashless payments.
After completing their digital classes, the three seniors find a new sense of confidence and purpose: Lilian learns how to further her singing hobby and learn songs with the aid of apps on her device; Andrew learns how to use Zoom to stay in touch with friends and family, and Shirley becomes a “messaging expert”, connecting with her children as well as learning to use the TraceTogether app. The six-minute film will air on Singtel TV and on various social media channels from now until 25 December.
Held at senior activity centres across the country, the Digital Silvers programme is designed to foster digital inclusion and help ease the sense of isolation that the elderly have experienced as COVID curtailed peoples’ ability to socialise.
According to the telco, the Digital Silvers programme will see SG$1 million worth of assistance go towards transforming senior activity centres into digital hubs to help more than 10,000 seniors build confidence in using digital devices and platforms. This involves tech upgrades including Wi-Fi connections, as well as Singtel TV content and tablets to facilitate virtual engagement. In addition to the digitalisation programme, Singtel has also set aside priority queues for seniors at stores and hotlines so that they can be given digital guidance and served more expediently.
Lian Pek, vice president of group strategic communications and brand at Singtel, said while it has been a tough year for everyone, the elderly are one of the more vulnerable groups affected by the pandemic as they may not have the digital skills to adapt to carry out their usual activities online. This is the challenge Singtel is trying to address through its Digital Silvers programme.
“It was heartening to see the transformation of our three seniors as we were documenting their learning journey. They began to feel more empowered and less displaced by technology as they learned to re-connect digitally and get the support they needed during this trying period. This film pays tribute to their optimism and can-do spirit,” she added.
“Seniors go digital too!” is the final film in Singtel’s year-long brand campaign which encourages Singaporeans to keep their spirits up in the current climate, by featuring the lives of ordinary folks and celebrating the Singaporean spirit of tenacity and perseverance. Other films in the campaign include its National Day film “This Is The Year”, its Hari Raya film “Keeping The Spirit Of Hari Raya Alive”, and its Deepavali film “There is Light”.
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