Greenwich Commission on Aging and GCDS Team Up to Digitally “CONNECTT” with Greenwich Older Adults

As the number of cases of COVID-19 increases, social distancing and stay at home mandates for older adults are vital.

As time goes on it can get lonely, especially for those who live alone.

The staff of the Commission on Aging and Greenwich Senior Center are dedicated to the health and well-being of older adults, and the importance of embracing technology to connect with them for socialization and engagement.

Greenwich Commission on Aging/Greenwich Senior Center has once again teamed up with faculty and staff from Greenwich Country Day School to launch the new digital program, CONNECTT, which stands for Connecting Our Neighbors Naturally Enriching Community Through Technology.

CONNECTT is a way to socially connect with other people for free and participate in enjoyable programs and activities – all from the comfort of their own home. Participants can connect to a live session via computer, tablet or smartphone. If they aren’t comfortable with technology, they can even call in on a landline. Each session is open to all. No registration is necessary.

All sessions are interactive and remote. Participants can see the instructor and ask questions or take part in games, book groups, conversations, even Zumba and Gentle Yoga in the comfort and safety of their own home. The first 30 minute CONNECTT session will launch on Thursday, March 26. A variety of additional topics and sessions will be posted soon for the week of March 30.

Upcoming Scheduled Sessions:

Thursday, March 26, 10:30 – 11:00 am: “Trivia”
Older adults will have fun answering questions about their favorite songs or who won the World Series ten years ago and many more questions.

Friday, March 27, 10:30 – 11:00 am: “Gentle Chair Yoga”
Anyone who can sit in a chair can do this. All it takes is listening and being willing to move. Great for reducing stress!

Jen Donnalley, Director, Center for Public Good and Middle School Math
Teacher at Greenwich Country Day School, spearheaded the program with the
Greenwich Commission on Aging/Greenwich Senior Center. “Through technology,
participants will meet local students, teachers, artists, other older adults, their friends, and the Greenwich Senior Center staff,” said Jen. She collaborated with Greenwich Commission on Aging Director, Lori Contadino, Greenwich Senior Center Administrator, Laurette Helmrich and Steven Katz, Vice-Chairman for the Greenwich Commission on Aging. Laurette shared that this is an expansion of an already successful, intergenerational relationship we have with the staff and students of GCDS. Lori is thankful for the advancements in technology that now make it possible for older people to connect. “This was never possible before now. We are so lucky to have the capability, coupled with compassionate volunteers who truly want to help,” Lori said. “It can and will make a huge difference in the daily lives of so many people. Participation in daily remote programming also provides structure and a sense of routine to someone’s day – which is also very important during a time when our daily routines have been disrupted.”

Additionally, CONNECTT is offering one-on-one opportunities:
Daily Phone Calls From a Friendly Volunteer
Older adults can receive a free daily phone call from a friendly Greenwich Country Day School family who has been assigned to them. Connect, chat, check-in. Email
cpg@gcds.net or call (203) 863-5653.

Get Technology Help
For older adults who need free, basic, one-on-one help with their computer, smartphone or laptop, they can sign up and a Greenwich Country Day School volunteer will contact them to assist. Email cpg@gcds.net or call (203) 863-5653.

To CONNECTT to a free live session:

On your desktop or laptop, 10 minutes before the scheduled session, go to this Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/624949129

On your smartphone or tablet- first, download the free Zoom app from the App Store. 10 minutes before the scheduled session, go to this Zoom link:
https://zoom.us/j/624949129
On your phone: Call (929) 205-6099 and enter 3032051305#

If you have questions or need help, email cpg@gcds.net or call (203) 863-5653. Leave
your name and phone number and they will call you back.

As an overall planning department for older persons in Greenwich, The Greenwich Commission on Aging has been an official department of Town government since 1975. Their mission is to improve the quality of life for older Greenwich residents through planning, coordination, advocacy, education and Senior Center programming.