Chatterbox forum for Far South Coast seniors

Get chatting: Pambula resident John Hanley has created what he hopes will be a one-stop shop for information for Far South Coast seniors, a website called the Seniors Chatterbox. Picture: Melanie Leach

Get chatting: Pambula resident John Hanley has created what he hopes will be a one-stop shop for information for Far South Coast seniors, a website called the Seniors Chatterbox. Picture: Melanie Leach

A Pambula resident wants to get Far South Coast seniors chatting and he has created a forum to make it happen. 

When John Hanley retired from work 10 years ago he didn’t know how to turn on a computer, let alone use the internet or create a website, but his determination to “keep up with the times” and stay informed has led him down a road he never expected. 

Over the years he developed an interest in technology and website design but last year he realised that this hobby of his could be put to better use by helping fellow seniors in the area.

In mid 2016 a relative of John Hanley’s passed away and Mr Hanley spent hours searching for resources to provide information on what to do and who to contact locally.

“There is lots of information out there but it’s all scattered and it can be hard to find, especially for seniors,” he said. 

Because of this Mr Hanley decided to create a one stop shop for information for Far South Coast seniors. 

In December, 2016, he created the Seniors Chatterbox, a free local community service forum for over 50s.

“I want the website to become the first point of call for information, a place where most local seniors and other people can come together and chat about the subjects that interest them and to ask questions,” he said.

Mr Hanley said part of creating the website was for seniors to connect with like minded people without the need to join Facebook or any other formal social media platform. 

“A lot of seniors are scared of scammers or identity theft and because of this they are scared of Facebook and the internet in general,” he said. 

“But there is nothing to be scared of with Chatterbox, you register as a user but all your information remains private.”

Creating the website and getting it up and running has taken Mr Hanley around four months but he expects it to be over 12 months before the site really takes off. 

To accommodate local seniors, Mr Hanley has made the website as user friendly as possible and also chose “a larger font size for those seniors whose eyesight is not what it used to be”. 

For more information see www.seniorschatterbox.com or email seniorschatterbox@gmail.com

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