News & Events
Ben is Rushall Park’s new go-to IT volunteer
May 6, 2021
When it comes to technology, there is little that volunteer Ben Kuhar does not know, and if he does not have an answer, he will find a solution.
He is one of Rushall Park’s latest volunteers and his knowledge is already making a difference to the residents.
Ben was keen to volunteer at the retirement village because he enjoys being around older people, and as a local Fitzroy North resident, he is keen to give back to the community.
“Using technology is just like any other skill, so hopefully I can imitate some of the best teachers I had throughout school and break things down into small and easily manageable chunks for the residents to work through,” Ben said.
So far many of the tech issues he has encountered are ones he was expecting.
“I am often called on my grandparents to ‘fix’ their IT and am finding that I am offering similar advice to the residents,” Ben said.
That advice is everything from how to connect to the internet, set up accounts, stay in contact with friends and family.
For those more tech-savvy residents, Ben has been helping with them with using shortcuts in Word so they become more efficient, or how best to use a formula in Excel.
“And there is always that common issue of how to fix the computer screen when it is too zoomed in,” Ben said.
He puts great effort into making the sessions a positive and collaborative experience so that he is not the main ‘fixer’ and instead helps residents to understand how they can use technology better to enhance their lives.
He is quick to dismiss the stereotype that older people struggle with technology.
“My grandfather struggles with using a phone or computer but when his sewing machine is not working, he can easily fix it. It just boils down to familiarity, the more you use something the better and more accustomed you become.”
Ben completed his science degree at the University of Melbourne at the end of 2020. Now he is working a bartender at the MCG, a stop gap job which he loves.
“I can be found there during most sports occasions throughout the year, and this job allows me to earn some money whilst I watch the Carlton boys play,” he said.
Never one to shy away from learning, Ben has recently been turning his attention to picking up Macedonian, the native tongue of his much-loved grandfather. He has been studying via the webs, and is looking forward to being proficient enough to hold a proper conversation.
"I love the fact that Rushall Park residents and volunteers are so active – contributing to life in the village. The sense of the community is strong which is why I put my name on the waiting list" - Maggie Birkett.