Poppy, 98, thoroughly enjoys her visits from IMPACT Community Services volunteer Margie Boyd, but now Margie is able to take Poppy on adventures into the wider world from the comfort of her own home.
Margie is a volunteer with IMPACT's Community Visitors Scheme (CVS), which provides that all-important regular contact that some of our elderly are missing.
Now Margie is able to use technology to make those visits far more exciting and rewarding.
IMPACT's CVS program has several sets of virtual reality goggles that can give residents access to a world of amazing experiences, including National Geographic footage of such adventures as sailing down the Nile, sitting and watching elephants, a trip to space, and sailing through Antarctica, looking at the icebergs.
There are also some meditation apps, where one can relax in a rainforest or a beautiful garden. The VR technology allows experiences to be tailored to the individuals interests and hobbies, or someone’s own culture.
“Poppy loves new things,” said Margie (pictured with IMPACT's Steven Hull).
“She's not afraid of new technology like this. She's an innovator. And she loves nature.
“Every time I go we visit her garden and look at her plants, which she's very proud of. I mentioned the googles to her and she's keen to use them. So next visit she'll be able to see some other gardens.”
Margie has been visiting Poppy for about eight months and looks forward to her visits just as much as Poppy does.
“She has so much history, she knows so much, I love to hear her stories,” Margie said.
“She's encouraging and she looks forward to our visits. And it’s helpful for her to voice what she wants to do because she still has plans for things she wants to achieve.”
IMPACT's CVS program connects volunteers with people in aged-care homes or in their own home.
If you want to find out more about becoming a volunteer call 4153 4233.