New Vlog Series to Help Older Adults Stay Engaged and Informed
Pima Council on Aging | Pima County, Arizona
Monday, August 17, 2020
Section: COVID-19 Resources

When communities across southern Arizona shut down in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Pima Council on Aging (PCOA) wanted to create a regularly scheduled outreach channel to give older adults in its community something engaging and informative to look forward to. The organization developed a vlog (video blog) series called PCOA Voices as a fun and meaningful way for older adults to stay connected to PCOA staff while educating the community about PCOA’s services and issues that are important to older adults. The vlogs are 30 to 40-minute pre-recorded episodes that are streamed on the second and fourth Fridays of each month on PCOA’s Vimeo and Facebook pages.
Hosted by Lisa Reams, PCOA’s Vice President of Programs and Services, PCOA Voices allows the AAA staff to share their expertise in a variety of ways. Each episode includes a brief introduction by the host, a group or panel discussion, two quick tips on topics like health, aging and wellness, social isolation, caregiving or technology and a one-on-one interview. To date PCOA has produced five episodes. Upcoming episodes are promoted by e-blast and on Facebook. Production of PCOA Voices is done in-house, with videos recorded via Zoom and produced and edited by PCOA’s communications team. 
PCOA Voices has been very well received by the local community. To date, the five episodes have averaged 400 views each. PCOA’s next step is to conduct a Facebook survey asking viewers to give them a sense of who is watching, what they enjoy and what suggestions they have for improving the broadcast.
In addition to the vlog series, PCOA is now offering virtual caregiver support groups. While initial engagement was slow, PCOA is now receiving feedback from participants that many have wanted to attend support groups for some time but were unable to leave the loved one for whom they provide care in order to do so. As a result, even when it is safe to hold in-person support groups again, PCOA will continue to provide these virtual support groups, giving their community flexible options for connecting that best meet each individual’s needs.