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November 9, 2010 > Alameda County Library News: Older adults thrive at Tri-City libraries

Alameda County Library News: Older adults thrive at Tri-City libraries

Submitted By Nancy Tucker, Fremont Main Library, Reference and Older Adult Services

Programming, designed for older adults at Tri-City Libraries, provides instruction, information, or entertainment, free of charge. Both Fremont Main and Union City offer computer tutoring. At the Fremont Main Library's Teen/Senior Computer and Gadget Help program, teens tutor older adults on Wednesday afternoons, from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Older adults can drop in with their individual questions or take a structured lesson on the following topics: computer basics, Internet basics, Microsoft Word basics, or email basics. Teens will also help with gadgets such as digital cameras, cell phones, iPods, etc. Fremont's multilingual teen tutors can help in Farsi, Cantonese, Mandarin, or English.

After participating, satisfied adults have thanked the teens for their helpful and excellent instruction. As one participant said, "My whole world is opening up."

The fall series will conclude November 24 and resumes in February for the spring series, giving the teens a break for exams and the holidays. For more information about this program, call 510-745-1401.

Union City

The Union City Library also offers computer tutoring for beginners. This fall the library is offering a series of lectures and hands-on labs October through December on Sunday afternoons from 4 to 6 p.m. Unfortunately, labs are currently filled but folks can attend the lectures. Individual tutoring sessions are also available on Tuesdays from 6-8 p.m. and Thursdays from 4-6 p.m.; usually three spots are available. Instructional topics include email basics, Internet searching, and Microsoft Word basics. For more information about Union City's program or to sign-up, call 510-745-1464, Ext. 7.


The Newark Library offers ongoing drop-in computer help from 4-6 p.m. on Thursdays.

In addition to individual tutoring, the following library titles may help older adults master those pesky computers and digital devices. Dewey Decimal numbers for locating the items on the shelf are listed before the titles:

* 006.6 Wempen: Microsoft Office 2007 for Seniors for Dummies by Faith Wempen
* LT 004 Basic: Basic Computers for Beginners by Web Wise Seniors, Inc. (The LT in front of the call number here means it is in Large Type and shelved with other LT material.)
* 004.0846 Muir: Computers for Seniors for Dummies by Nancy Muir
* 004.16 Stokes: "Is this thing on?": A Computer Handbook for Late Bloomers, Technophobes, and the Kicking & Screaming by Abby Stokes

Afternoon programs, beginning at 1:30 p.m., are centrally planned and presented quarterly at all seven branch libraries, including Fremont, Newark and Union City. They offer timely information or a unique perspective. At the current program, "Living on a Fixed Income," participants will learn how to stretch their income by setting priorities, establish a budget, plan and save. Dates for this program are:

Newark, Tuesday, November 30
Union City, Wednesday, December 1
Fremont, Wednesday, December 8

If attendees at these programs wish to learn more, the library has many titles on money management. Here are a few that might be of interest:

* 332.024 Medisky: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Stretching Your Dollar by Shannon M. Medisky
* 332.024 Karp: The 1-2-3 Money Plan: The Three Most Important Steps to Saving and Spending Smart by Gregory Karp
* 332.024 Wood: Wealth Watchers: A Simple Program To Help You Spend Less and Save More by Alice Wood

The recently concluded program, "Laughing for the Health of It" had over 400 total attendees at all the branches. The presenter, Bev Bender, trained as a gerontologist, stand-up comic, clown & certified laughter instructor, wowed her audiences. In January, February, and March, 2011, the program will be "Mind Aerobics for Seniors."

The Alameda County Library's Older Adult Services maintains a mailing list and sends out announcements about upcoming programs to interested organizations or individuals. Contact Patricia Ruscher, Program Outreach: email: or call (510) 745-1491 to either receive an email or printed announcement targeted to Fremont Main, Newark or Union City Libraries.

Alameda County Library's Homebound Services brings the library to older adults; volunteers will deliver library materials to adults unable to come to the library. To set up this service or to volunteer, also contact Patricia Ruscher at the number above.

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