Exploring the world through technology

A Karana Care Assistant has been enriching and changing the lives of residents through the use of technology. Kristopher Tompkins has been coordinating the use of 2 new I-pads at Karana since they received them few months ago and has found an incredibly positive response to their use around the community.

“They have been great and the response to them has been amazing,” Kris said.

Kris has been using the iPads with residents to help them re-connect with their lives outside of the community. He said he has been able to trace back international resident’s history on Google Maps and show them places from their childhood and track family when they are overseas.

“It’s like bringing the outside world in,” Kris added.

The iPads have given residents the opportunity to connect with family in times of need and foster relationships with long distance friends. Kris spoke of a beautiful story where a resident was able to see one of her children for the last time via Skype on the iPad on the day of her passing.

Kris said that it was incredible to see such a touching moment happening through technology. The family of the resident were so grateful for the opportunity to connect in those last moments together and it all wouldn’t have been possible without the use of Skype.

Technology has played an important role in enriching the experiences of residents at Karana and has brought old skills back to life thanks to its easy handling. A resident has found a particular love for the iPad through the use of a piano playing application that Kris found for her. The resident is not able to readily use strong downward force, which left her not being able to play her beloved instrument around the community.

“Being able to play again has brought life back to her and she is able to play whenever she wants to,” Kris said.

Kris is also exploring the use of the iPad for assisting in dementia care through sensory apps that mimic familiar sounds and encourage memory use. Kris hopes to develop the use of iPads and technology at Karana even further by hosting technology usage seminars and using them as a way for residents to communicate with each other within the community.

Contact: Annemarie Watt