. Report from U3APP President, Graham Gosling

U3A Port Phillip:-

A success story of U3APP coping with the coronavirus.

Such has been the success of U3APP in moving to an online environment with now over 500 people participating, it has been noticed by U3A Network Victoria, the coordinating body for all U3As in Victoria. Consequently, I was invited to participate in the U3A Network Presidents' Forum on 20th May. The Forum was held online using Webinar with over 70 U3As participating.

I was asked to deliver a paper on how our U3A was coping during the coronavirus lockdown and then participate in a panel discussion with two other U3As and two researchers from RMIT. One of the researchers was online from Brazil. These researchers are looking into how older persons are managing technology.

The RMIT research team outlined that members ‘do not want phones to take over’, but also that ‘the human being is moved by needs’ and so, a future with more digital interaction is an enormous opportunity to embrace.  RMIT sees the U3A Movement as ‘community connectors’.

The takeaway from the forum for U3APP is that due to the efforts of the COVID 19 Working Group, in conjunction with the Tutors and all the Volunteers, we are one of the organisations that are leading the way in providing enhanced and innovative services to our members during the pandemic lockdown.  This provides us with a fantastic platform for reviewing how and what we can provide in the future.

Please stay safe and well.

Regards

Graham Gosling - President U3A Port Phillip