The Internet is an increasingly necessary service for individuals of all ages, and is of even greater importance to the aging population. In addition to providing health information, entertainment and serving as an education tool, the Internet also provides a connection to the community. It reduces isolation and increases the possibility that one can more easily “age in place,” allowing adults to remain in their homes well into their elder years. To promote the adoption of these Internet benefits the Project to Get Older Adults onLine (GOAL) announced their launch as a new organization dedicated to providing a platform for advancing broadband services to the older adult community.
At GOAL’s launch event the founder, Debra Berlyn, as well as representatives from several leading aging, consumer and non-profit groups that serve on GOAL’s advisory committee: the Association of Area Agencies on Aging, the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, American Telemedicine Association, Older Adults Technology Services (OATS) and Consumer Action, all spoke about their hopes for this new project.
During the event, Project GOAL also discussed and highlighted the major purpose of the group: to advance the benefits of broadband (telemedicine, expanding social interactions and social networking, reducing isolation, maintaining connections with family and friends, and facilitating aging in place) and address the barriers to the adoption of broadband that are of particular concern to the aging community.
It is obvious that just as the national stimulus plan stimulated our economy, this Project will stimulate broadband adoption for older adults.