Tom Hlavin is the Executive Director and Founder of Simply Virtual, Inc. Tom spent years engaging seniors in Northeast Ohio in his role as Community Relations Manager at Oak Street Health, a national medical group specializing in caring for low-income senior citizens. When the Corona Virus hit in 2020 and the lockdowns ensued, Tom saw firsthand the loneliness, social isolation and depression affecting those same seniors. Simply Virtual was founded in October of 2020 with the mission of getting technology, training and content to every low-income senior that wants it.
Sandy joined Simply Virtual as a Virtual Navigator. Sandy is quick to build relationships with the seniors she assists in setting up tablets and hotspots. Sandy hails from Puerto Rico and brings to Simply Virtual a bilingual option for seniors that require it.
In her spare time, Sandy is a Zumba instructor and Reiki practitioner. She is active in the community and an advocate for abused women.
Computers, desktops and tablets are set up for seniors, with orientation and training at the point of distribution. Recipients without email addresses are set up with one, and interactive applications are installed to allow video and audio connections with family and friends. Finally, the seniors are shown how to use the tablet's app store to add games, books, news sources and more to personalize their experience.
We combine easy-to-use Amazon Fire tablets and targeted applications to make the introduction to a virtual world simple and fun. Instructor-led training (employing all CDC safety protocols) goes at a pace comfortable for clients, assuring understanding of the new virtual world and use of the tablet with simple one-touch operation.
Working with community partners and service providers, clients have access to fun and interesting virtual options. From conversations with medical personnel to a lively game of Bingo and everything in between, clients are kept engaged and socially involved as often as they like.
Through our outreach, clients have access new virtual world of doctor visits, services research and family connections. For those clients unable or unwilling to venture from their homes, the virtual world brings services and information to them. Staff and volunteers make sure a comfort level with the technology.
Simply Virtual participates in Amazon Smile. Amazon donates a portion of every purchase to help us provide low-income seniors with tablets, computers and content.