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Story in Brief

The 4-H Tech Changemakers program combines the power of teen leadership with the opportunities technology and broadband access offer to help communities realize the potential of technology as a force for good. This program elevates teens as teachers to provide training on technology and digital literacy skills to assist adults in 80 communities across 13 states. 4-H Tech Changemakers address the digital divide between young people and senior citizens by providing education on common technological devices, assisting with one-on-one support, and helping with online activities. Murray County 4-H offers monthly classes at the Murray County Senior Center focusing on digital literacy skills. Some of the classes focus on social media, online shopping, internet safety, video calling, grocery services, and basic skills involving email, contacts and voicemail. It builds relationships between 4-H youth and older adults taking classes each month. This program also improves leadership skills of 4-H’ers teaching digital literacy monthly to an audience of another generation. Throughout the course of the program, Murray County 4-H had 25 youth leaders teaching sessions and served a total of 15 senior adults. One of the senior students wrote, "I have been out of school for a while now and technology was not a word in existence at that time. These young leaders that we had teach us technology classes were not only kind and caring toward us but very patient with us. These students were excellent teachers and throughout the year they became our friends as well.” A 4-H'er said, “I have met some wonderful older people that I may not have if I weren’t in this program, and they have told me some great stories about their lives. I like that they make us feel helpful when we are teaching them the technology and when they understand something, how they get excited just like we do. I now see what my mom meant when she said you don’t have to be an adult to be a good leader, you just have to care about others.”