Carrie, a member of her local Jewish Community Center in Summit County, Ohio was intrigued when the Jewish Family Service Association told her about their partnership with GetSetUp supported by the Ohio Department of Aging to offer their community members classes at no charge.
“I’m always adventurous and I thought let’s try it. It just captured me to watch the programs. I love the travel programs. They are so unique and I feel like I know Russ and Sue.”
Even though Carrie has only been on the platform a few weeks, she’s already advocating for it in her local community. She’s spoken directly with Direction Home which serves the older adults community and recently gave out 500 computers about the GetSetUp program. She’s also speaking about the program on an upcoming Zoom meeting for the Age-friendly group in Akron Summit County.
“I thought while watching GetSetUp classes, how can you get depressed when you are meeting a lot of different people? I feel older adults sometimes get in the same pattern and they are scared to step out of it, so they hold back. I felt like GetSetUp is a good way for them to step out of their pattern especially with the winter coming. In GetSetUp classes, you can’t be depressed because you have somewhere to go.”
Carrie’s favorite classes are the travel classes. Her first class was a travel class on the Blue Ridge Mountains with Russ. She was particularly intrigued by this class because it is where her parents spent their honeymoon on Skyline Drive. And even though she’d been there before, she wanted to see the changes.
“The classes are great because it’s like you get to be personal with the people and I feel you get to know them. When I tell others about the site and show it to them, they also get fascinated with the classes and can’t put them down.”
Setting Future Goals
Carrie is also learning a lot about technology and her computer.
“I was surprised by the things I can do on my computer that I didn’t know existed. Best of all the instructors have patience with you. They send the outlines and the notes after classes and you can retake a class if you want.”
Carrie’s next goal is to design her own webpage to promote the book she wrote about her dog, Lucy. Lucy a rescue dog came to her shortly after her husband passed away. While Lucy was supposed to stay short-term, both Lucy and Carrie knew she’d found her home.
“Kevin taught me about the different sites you could use to build your webpage. It feels good to do it yourself instead of trusting someone else. It makes you feel more independent and you have other things to talk to people about. You aren’t just thinking of the whole humdrum and doctors appointments and what am I going to fix for dinner. It gives you a better outlook on people and conversations.”
As a retired social worker, who spent much of her time working at Children Services, Carrie is a people person.
“I even developed my dog into being a people person too. I have lots of good memories of my husband who I lost seven years ago, but I swear he sent me this dog, Lucy. I thought I needed to write a book since God does things even for animals. So Lucy and I are trying to make a difference in people’s lives by promoting hope and love.”
Classes are helping her to learn new skills enjoy her hobbies with others. She’s having fun participating in the painting classes and learning how to make recycled crafts.
“Pam’s really down to earth in the painting classes. She gives you tips on things I never thought I could do. She showed a brush and how to bring texture to the grass. I didn’t know just one brush could help me do that!”
While she’s planning to continue the classes she’s enjoying, she’s also got her eye on some new ones. Next, she’s planning to try out some of the game classes. She thinks they look fun and remind her of the game nights she used to have with her own children.