The OATS approach begins with people—thousands of hours working face-to-face with a vast diversity of older adults in community settings. We have taught seniors the basics of email, helped geriatric patients manage medical information, and empowered activists to build community networks for social change. Our leadership brings decades of experience in direct training, coaching, community organizing, and communications, along with a broad knowledge base of applied research and academic study.
OATS is a social impact organization that builds sustainable new systems to change the way we age. We are design thinkers, constantly testing new ideas and looking for leverage points where our work can help seniors use technology to improve their health, finances, social engagement, learning and creative expression. We partner with government agencies, community-based organizations, national advocacy groups, and major corporations to engineer solutions that put technology in the hands of older adults to achieve meaningful outcomes.
The Practice of Change
OATS combines a deep understanding of how older adults live and learn in the digital age with a relentless ambition to create transformational outcomes. This is what we mean by “The Practice of Change.”
We have innovated an award-winning model for program design and development, and in New York City we have built the country’s largest and most comprehensive municipal technology program for seniors, serving over 20,000 people each year and sustaining 24 technology labs across the city. We believe that the most powerful change models link the capacity of large government and corporate institutions to reach scale with the strategic vision and focus of nonprofit change agents such as OATS.
OATS is committed to the principle that older adults possess limitless potential to develop as individuals, to support their families and communities, and to change the world. We strive in all our work to harness this energy and to enable seniors to shape their own destinies.
We see technology as a means to accomplish powerful outcomes, not as an end in itself. We teach seniors how to use mainstream devices and applications that are popular among all age groups in order to promote integration and relevance. We are technology agnostic, modifying curriculum and training models to adjust to the emergence of new and popular offerings, and testing devices and interfaces with older adults to learn what is relevant and intuitive.
We take the long view on partnerships. We believe in promoting trust, honesty, and support for like-minded organizations in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Our actions speak louder than words; we’ve distributed hundreds of free computers and thousands of free classes to partner organizations, and we’ve helped corporate and government partners build programs that advanced policy and business imperatives.
Finally, we are obsessed, absolutely obsessed, with quality. Our goal is for every participant in our programs to have a world-class experience, something that enriches and transforms their lives. In our most recent participant survey, 100 percent of program participants said they would recommend our program to others. We strive to maintain this standard of excellence in everything we do.