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Calgary Cares: Tablet donation connects seniors for virtual visits during COVID-19 pandemic

Calgary Cares: Tablet donation connects seniors to their loved ones
WATCH: A seniors supportive living network in Alberta is saying thanks after receiving 22 donated tablets. Lauren Pullen reports.

Face-to-face visits can’t happen right now like they used to, especially for seniors, but that human connection is still incredibly critical — arguably even more so amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is our challenge: how do we get people communicating with each other so they don’t lose that sense of belonging… that sense of community?” said Georg Rath, the ambassador of community engagement with Connecting Care.

WATCH: Calgary Cares: Keeping seniors connected in self-isolation

Connecting Care has multiple seniors supportive living communities across Alberta. Many of them are in rural parts of the province.

In a conversation with their service provider, Shaw, IT specialists with Connecting Care were going over their connectivity challenges during the pandemic.

“Was it an accident or was it fate? I don’t know,” Rath chuckled.

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“In our daily business with Shaw, we discussed what we needed and what the challenges were, and they said, ‘What can we do?’ And they donated 22 iPads to us.”

READ MORE: Calgary Cares: Helping seniors get the groceries they need during COVID-19 pandemic

The donation means that all Connecting Care residents in Alberta have access to technology that allows them to have virtual visits with their loved ones.

“They’re just thrilled to be able to see face to face. That’s the best possible scenario at this time,” said Tracy Elliott, the general manager at Points West Living in Red Deer.

The tablets have now been distributed to Connecting Care communities across Alberta.