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5 ways to help Nigerian parents utilize modern technology

Wednesday, 19 October 2016


Technology evolves every day, thus it is important to stay updated. While young Nigerians who were born during the outbreak of modern technology have no problems keeping abreast and coping with the complexities and intricacies of modern technology as well as the internet, their parents, on the other hand, who grew up pre-technology era seem to find it all confusing and intimidating.

Basically, internet in the modern age has been considered by both tech giants, who have little to gain from engaging with the ‘grey’ market, as well as by many older people themselves the preserve of the younger generations. With this approach, it is no wonder many people over a certain age group feel reluctant to learn - whether that’s because of apathy or because of fear -  and as such, do not maximize modern technology which could actually have a big impact on their level of socialization, knowledge, and even their physical and mental health, making their lives much easier.

@Jumia Travel recommends 5 ways young Nigerians can help their parents build a bridge between modern technology and their personal interests by showing them how to use these tools to improve their lives.

Help them enroll in computer schools
You are never too old to go to school. Enroll your parents in a computer school or just adult schools that offer classes for computer literacy and information technology. There are a number of these schools in many cities within Nigeria, especially Lagos and Abuja that offer free or low-cost computer classes for older people. Enrolling them in these classes allows them learn with their peers, making it all less awkward and difficult for them as it removes the stress that they may feel when a younger family member attempts to teach them.  Again, the added level of socialization is good for them as it also motivates them to learn the new information quickly enough to keep up with their peers.

Show them the human elements

A majority of Nigerian parents find it hard to adopt or relate with modern technology as they tend to view advancements such as texting or e-mailing as impersonal. This misconception makes them reticent to maximize the modern technology available to them. In order to help them get past this misconception, it is important you draw their attention and make them aware of the human elements of modern technology; that way, they feel a sort of connection and start using modern technology. A great way to get them in touch with the human element is by teaching them about online video chatting, enabling them to see the person they are speaking to. This will boost the positive mental health benefits of socialization, and also help them become more interested in using this type of technology.

Go for their area of Interest

A good way to get Nigerian parents hooked to modern technology is by engaging their personal interests. Show them how modern technology ties into their favourite activities For instance, if they love to play scrabble or  any outdoor games, you can introduce them to the online version,  making them understand they can play the game and even interact with other players online from the comfort of their home.

Make it all simple

Using computers and the internet without much technological exposure can be very tasking and overwhelming, and as such, Nigerian parents will definitely find it very difficult and discouraging operating several modern technology gadgets. A good way to keep them interested is by providing them with tech gadgets that are simple and easy to use. For instance, touchscreen tablets are a great option compared to keypad phones as they are larger and do not require as much navigational know-how. Giving them tech gadgets that are easy to use will help them get used to everything without getting frustrated and overwhelmed, eventually making them more comfortable about exploring modern technology.

Educate them on the dangers of online scams

While teaching them the good aspects of modern technology, enlighten them also on the risks and dangers that may be encountered as well. It is no secret that older adults like our Nigerian parents are much more naïve and as such are more susceptible to become victims of identity theft or an online scam. Giving them tips that can help protect them as they get used to modern technology ensure they do not fall into any trap that will completely dissuade them from ever using modern technology again.

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