Getting Out Of The Newsroom For Your Community
Martika Ornella

Martika Ornella, I really LOVED reading this! So nicely done.

  1. While the investigation surrounding the VA and mounting evidence that workers falsified reports on wait times for medical appointments for veterans doesn’t particularly pertain to senior seniors and their relationship with technology, I still believe that it is an example of journalism positively serving my community. This was a massive report revealing that 64,000 veterans who have asked for appointments over the past decade NEVER actually got them. The majority of veterans seeking medical care were older, and as a result of this investigation the senate actually passed a bill allowing veterans to seek medical care outside the VA system (you can read more about that here).
  2. In general, I feel as though senior citizens are left out of the conversation quite often and are incredibly underserved in what’s being reported on in their communities. Not only is there a lack of reporting, but I also feel as though people write about seniors and their needs without actually talking to seniors to better understand those needs. For instance, in focusing on seniors and technology specifically there have been many articles surfacing about new ways Silicon Valley is attempting to create robots and different software that will help us keep track of seniors from the time they wake up until the time they go to bed. Will this help increase their safety? Absolutely. But did anyone ask seniors what they want? Because what I’m learning as I’m listening to my community is that they don’t want robots tracking their steps, but instead they want a home cooked meal delivered to their door and some social interaction in the process. As social journalists, we have the power to be agents of change in each of our communities and to make sure we don’t fail the ones we serve.
  3. I am attempting to connect two communities — one that is virtually engaged and one that is physically engaged. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, this will be my challenge as I attempt to find the best way to bridge the gap between millennials and seniors. My thought process moving forward is that we will use our monthly events to connect young professionals and seniors physically, but will also create a process where seniors have easy access to one-on-one help that exists virtually. I’ll let you know how that goes. ;)
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