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Keeping Up With Family and Friends Using Technology

Program Description

As people have become more mobile, families are often stretched across large geographical areas that act as a barrier to their personal communication. Multiple technologies exist, which allow one to communicate with their loved-ones frequently and in many different ways.


  • Letter writing is not dead: Getting started and going with e-mail or cyber letters.
  • Chat over tea and your computer: An introduction to sending text messages and chat.
  • Photos worth a thousand words: The basics of sharing photos and images online.
  • Memoirs: Your own online journal, opinion column, or blank slate (blogging).


  • Library staff, college-age student, or other who is familiar with using email and can demonstrate, as well as discuss, how they use e-mail and chat or text-messaging.
  • Local photo journalist or amateur photographers who are familiar with online transmission.
  • Local authors, memoirist, or college writing professors.


  • Length - Three 1 hour sessions (with follow-up sessions, as interest indicates)
  • Location - Computer lab with one computer per individual and volunteers to answer questions.

Learn More About It

Create display of books that discuss technologies available or stories of individuals who use these technologies successfully. Create list of Web sites available that offer help on email, photos, and blogging.

Make It Special

  • Invite participants back to share their accomplishments and have coffee.
  • Send photos to their loved-ones during class.
  • Maintain a list of volunteers who can help participants as they learn.

Market It

Ask city to publicize program in monthly water bills. Handout flyer at similar programs, so participants can either attend or pass it on. Distribute flyers to shopping centers, pharmacies, clinics, doctor's offices, as well as place flyer near check-out desk of library.

  • Montana State Library
  • P.O. Box 201800, 1515 East 6th Avenue
  • Helena, MT 59620-1800
  • Phone: (406) 444-3115
  • Fax: (406) 444-0266
  • msl.mt.gov