Let’s Talk Tech!

While some might not expect to find tech resources among the high priorities of a senior living community, at Covia, our investment in technology tools and programming are a much-appreciated advantage for our residents. From safety and security services that leverage advanced technologies to our award-winning Agora software used for our Well Connected classes and groups to the WiFi available in every community, Covia is always looking for innovations that make life better for our residents.

Technology is not an end in itself, but a means to support connected community living. For example, each Covia community has an online portal – a community website tailored for that community’s needs. It’s a centralized way for us to share information with each other and stay in touch.  But the portal isn’t the only way each community is using technology to keep people informed and connected.

At Canterbury Woods in Pacific Grove, along with announcements and digital signage, our in-house TV channel broadcasts exercise classes and fireside chats right to our residents’ homes. Our weekly Tech Table with Blanca event on Fridays gives residents the opportunity to explore technology and ask our activities director questions about devices like their cell phones, tablets, and laptops. We even set up a communications room that has a built-in communications and sound system that residents can reserve to do video chats with family members.

In Palo Alto, Webster House’s commitment to technology has helped residents stay in shape mentally and physically over the past year. Our exercise instructors have been hosting regular Zoom workouts for those who want to get moving without having to leave their apartment. We share TED talks and lectures online each month. And we even have a tech committee that helps make sure our portal is up-to-date and supports the specific needs of our community.

At San Francisco Towers, a contracted tech consultant is available to help our residents with simple installations and basic maintenance of their devices, as well as to provide technical support and help them make the most of their tech options. In assisted living, we use a program called iN2L (It’s Never Too Late) to give our residents a touch-screen platform that offers social tools like email and video chat, exercise classes, music, videos, TV, and radio programming, and a Tell Your Story component that captures personal histories.

At St. Paul’s Towers, technology brings us closer together. Our resident-led technology committee works with Covia management and staff to offer suggestions for improving existing technology tools and provide input for future ones. From prioritizing WiFi enhancements to providing a printed tech resource guide that includes how-to’s and who to contact for assistance, our committee is always looking out for what is needed. The committee recently uncovered a great feature of our resident web portal that provides a directory of residents that can include a brief bio. The committee is now reaching out to all of their neighbors  to encourage participation and to help them facilitate getting their information added. They have even recruited a volunteer team of editors to help with the process.

At Spring Lake Village, our residents actively use the online portal to check menus for the bistro and dining room, stay on top of our activities schedule, and find new activities to get involved in. Each resident committee has their own web page where they can post minutes and membership information. We also have regular in-person tech programs where residents can troubleshoot issues with devices or apps and learn how to better use features like their calendar or camera. For those that don’t have their own computer, we have a business office with computers, printers, and copiers, as well. And one area where tech has proven invaluable is in emergency communications. Our One Call Now system calls cell phones and landlines and sends texts with specific instructions and updates in the event of an emergency

At Friends House, technology is a community effort. When many of our activities went virtual last year, our resident-run Sight and Sound committee led the charge. They ensured that our beloved activities transitioned smoothly to Zoom and helped make sure their fellow residents knew how to use the technology so they could stay involved. The committee also regularly hosts film screenings, and they are playing an active role in the upcoming launch of our online resident portal.

Technology tools are just one of the great resources available to our residents. We’re proud of the way we’ve been able to incorporate technology into our communities to support the people we serve.

Learn more about how technology is used at our communities by giving us a call or sending an email. We’d love to schedule a tour to show you in person how we’re using technology to make life better.