Senior citizens from Tampines learn how to use the Internet at IDA's IT bootcamp

Sharing photos on Facebook, chatting online and using the Google search engine were some things that senior citizens from Tampines learnt from students at a bootcamp on Wednesday.

An initiative under the Infocomm Development Authority's (IDA) Silver Infocomm Initiative, the Constituency Intergenerational IT Bootcamp aims to help senior citizens familiarise themselves with computers and the Internet by having students aged 10 to 18 to guide them in information technology lessons.

The boot camp this year, jointly organised by the IDA, Tampines GRC, People's Association Active Ageing Council and 15 schools in the Tampines district, has drawn 348 senior citizens - the largest number at the constituency level.

Last year, the bootcamp was held over one week at schools in Ang Mo Kio GRC and more than 250 senior citizens and students participated in it.

These workshops are typically conducted during school holidays at the computer labs of participating schools and also aim to encourage bonding between the seniors and the students.

Some of the schools that will be taking part this year include Dunman Secondary School, East Spring Primary School and Tampines Junior College.

To date, 53 schools have co-organised 77 bootcamps with some 1,600 seniors participating since the programme was launched in 2010. The programme was introduced at the constituency level in 2012.

Mr Heng Swee Keat, Minister for Education and an adviser to grassroots organisations in Tampines GRC, toured East Spring Primary School and Dunman Secondary School where the bootcamps were held on Wednesday.

"I'm happy to see the senior citizens and students having fun learning IT," said Mr Heng. "Such intergenerational bonding programmes improve communication and understanding among the senior citizens and the youth."