This is Valerie Wood-Gaiger MBE – the lady who started LEARN WITH GRANDMA – she is making 80, has 3 grown-up children; 7 grandchildren & 5 Great grandchildren. Her little dog is called Lily! She USES the Internet!
She was very ill in 2013. During the 5 months she spent recovering she had time to think of what she wanted to do for the rest of her life. She was then 72 and could have retired but she had an idea! That the internet could become a bridge to reunite the generations!
Throughout the world most elders do not use modern technology – most young people do! Why not ask the young to teach their elders? Why not ask the elders to teach the young? Valerie decided to float her ideas on Facebook – a free way to spread a message! In just over 2 years LEARN WITH GRANDMA has developed into an International network with 36 groups. 16 in Africa – including of course Learn with Grandma Nigeria
Valerie Wood Gaiger became an International Presenter at eLearning Conference in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania in 2011, Kampala, Uganda in 2014. Details of what she has done in Africa are in the video below.
What does Inter-Generational Learning mean?
It’s very simple – sharing skills and knowledge across the generations. We always learnt from our elders. Psalm 78 in the Bible – Tells us to TEACH! Teach as our fathers taught us. That was written by Asaph in King David’s Court about 1050 BC – about 3 thousand years ago!! We can no longer learn as our parents and grandparents learnt. They grew up before the internet was invented.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee, founder of the World Wide
Sir Tim Berners-Lea invented the world wide web 25 years ago. He gave his invention to the World – what a wonderful present! I wonder if even he realised that his invention would change our lives so dramatically – so quickly! His wonderful invention has brought us great benefits but it has also caused a new age gap – Throughout the world most elders do not use the information & commutation technology – most young people do. ICT has divided the generations – it can be the bridge to reunite them!
We can learn HOW to do almost everything from the internet. We can get the recipe from the internet but we still need to bake the cake!
We cannot live without the old skills too. We need doctors & nurses; bakers; plumbers, technicians; teachers; I suppose we need lawyers & accountants! But we need a farmer – we need food – every day!! Man cannot live by technology alone we also need Bread! If you can show farmers how to USE the internet not only can they find out how to deal with problems; how to increase yields – they could also access wider markets.
Traditional skills and the internet are vital to this business which is creating a better living for over 200 families.
What does Learn with Grandma do?
We encourage people to Take Action! All elders have skills and knowledge they need – Man cannot live by technology alone we also need Bread! You have skills and knowledge your elders need – as you learn – so you can teach.
To do the little things you – in your schools and as individuals – can do to bring the generations together – using ICT as the bridge – so that you can have fun and work together to improve your community. It’s working! Some good projects are HAPPENING!!!
Rev Samtee Turay – Sierra Leone – Took Action & started a sewing workshop in his church. Now they have 2!! He reported – Thank you for suggesting a sewing group – We are making big progress – we have opened a second workshop! We have rescued more young girls from the street. We asked them to come and learn skills that will help them earn a living and benefit them for the rest of their lives. We have volunteer teachers but – as we have more girls – so we need more Sewing Machines!! Now – in 2 workshops – they are making school uniforms; baby clothes & other necessities We are saving the school & orphanage money; giving training to girls; helping them to come off the streets and live better more healthy lives.
Then I wondered if they could start a vegetable garden to help feed the orphans. They asked and the chief gave them some land; people came to help and now – they are eating the food they are growing!! Rev Sam reports – We are now making the second planting. This garden Project has helped to support the needs of our Orphans; widows and Single Mothers.
This is how Learn with Grandma is trying to help. I cannot send money – so I share ideas!!