Last fall, Redmond’s Kathy Cui searched for a way to fill her spare time since her University of Washington classes were being held remotely due to the pandemic.
TeleHealth Access for Seniors came onto the freshman’s radar via one of the UW’s registered student organizations. The nonprofit, which was launched by Florida-based high school and Yale University students in March of 2020, provides seniors and low-income communities with devices (phones, iPads and laptops), instructions and free tech support to connect them to their physicians.
Current UW sophomore Cui, who is studying neuroscience, and UW senior Nhu Nguyen, a public health-global health and biology major, are co-leads for the Washington 20-volunteer chapter that consists of college students and high schoolers. TeleHealth Access for Seniors put its Washington chapter on the map in May of 2020 and the nonprofit has undergone a brisk expansion and currently has chapters in 26 states.
Cui, a Redmond High School alumnus, has learned about running a nonprofit, grant writing and more over the last year. It’s impactful and satisfying work, she said.
“This certainly makes me feel better about my role in society and I’m really happy about the work that we’re doing here,” she added. “I really like how we get feedback from our clinics, and they tell us about what the devices are being used for. It makes it feel a lot more real.” She previously logged vital volunteer hours by helping a teacher with grading and picking up trash in her neighborhood.
In Washington at press time, TeleHealth Access for Seniors has raised $13,000-plus, donated 248 devices and partnered with International Community Health Services and HealthPoint Community Health Center in King County and Community Health Center of Snohomish County.
TeleHealth Access for Seniors’ nationwide statistics at press time are: $210,000 raised, 3,550 devices donated, 125 partner clinics/hospitals served and 425 high school and college student volunteers.
For more information, visit www.telehealthforseniors.org. To make a device donation, visit https://docs.google.com/