Calgary Seniors Community Computer Room

The Cause

KINDred Seniors Housing with Supports (KINDred Seniors) is a long-term case management program for older persons (55+) who are either experiencing homelessness or at imminent risk of homelessness. The program provides for clients who require some gerontological and social supports within an affordable housing setting. The program was developed to meet the gap of housing, social supports, and long-term case management without the need to go into a more supported living environment such as assisted living. By supporting people to age in place - when possible - housing stability and quality of life outcomes are achieved. In addition, the program provides immediate transitional housing (5 units) for those experiencing homelessness as they work to remove the barriers they are facing.

The program operates in partnership with HomeSpace Society, an affordable housing provider, in the Legacy building, a downtown 9-story apartment building that is shared with 3 other social services agencies. KINDred Seniors works with 30 clients on a permanent basis, for whom social isolation is a concern. The intention of the program is to support clients while creating a KIND community.

The idea: Calgary Seniors Community Computer Room. Most of the clients we serve are unable to access internet for several reasons: the cost of Wi-Fi, obtaining a device and the digital literacy to use the device. Calgary Seniors would like to provide a ‘communications room’ where clients can be assisted (either through staff or volunteers) in using the internet. This would allow people to increase their independence (filing their government reporting online rather than taking a bus across town to report in person) and enhance their quality of life (through accessing virtual services or being able to connect with family virtually).

A room has been designated within the Legacy building for this purpose by KINDred Seniors. Required items are Wi-Fi, a desk, with 2 chairs, a desktop computer, 2 tablets and monitor, and a small printer/scanner. Additional to this, a comfortable seating area where clients can access email or browse the internet would be ideal.

By providing the means to engage (and the support to do so), clients will enhance their connections, decrease social isolation, provide an additional opportunity to engage in meaningful daily activity and support their independence.

Who Will it Benefit?

The Calgary Seniors Community Computer Room at KINDred Seniors will directly benefit the clients and their social contacts. Residents have stated how much they miss a welcoming yet private place where they can use the internet.
With the support of the Field Law Community Fund, the Community Computer Room can be made into a small downtown co-op, where residents can sit in comfort and have a place to engage with friends and family while developing supportive relationships, decreasing social isolation, and increasing positive quality of life outcomes.