Nonprofit teaching grandparents how to text, stay in touch


ATLANTA ( — “My grandkids never call” is a common complaint among older Americans, but an Atlanta nonprofit group has a solution: teach grandparents how to text.

“That’s how people communicate today,” said Jane Ratliff, founder of Bluehair Technology Group. “Phone calls happen when people have time. People don’t always have time. And the older adult has to recognize that. And if you can text message in short bursts back and forth, you are going to have a conversation.”

Ratliff, who has a professional background in the mobile phone industry, said she got the inspiration for Bluehair while teaching her octogenarian mother how to use an iPad.

Many older Americans feel intimidated or overwhelmed when they visit help desks at electronics stores because they have no idea what to ask, Ratliff explained. So, teaching them about technology requires a different strategy than the standard “How may I help you?” approach.


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