GetSetUp is a peer-to-peer learning community that enables older adults to serve as the surprising superheroes of today’s economy, tapping a formidable growing population of expert, retired educators to help teach essential life-changing skills to others.
Neil D’Souza, Founder, GetSetUp, believes senior citizens have knowledge, time and wisdom to share with the world. In India alone, he says the older population is projected to cross 160 million by 2025 and surpass the number of kids under 14 by 2050. The overall seniorcare market is pegged at $5 billion in India.
Here in an exclusive interactive with Neil D’Souza, we get to know more about the platform:
What is the program about?
GetSetUp.org is a community platform where older adults can learn, connect and share about a variety of topics through a live, interactive peer-to-peer teaching model. GetSetUp was founded to create economic, social and educational opportunities for older adults.
How did it start? Whose idea/concept and initiative was it?
As my dad was retiring from his banking job, I noticed that there was still a lot of energy and curiosity in him at the age of 60. He wanted to stay active, learn new things and also share his wisdom with others. However every online place out there was designed only for millennials in mind. The only option for him was to engage on Facebook which was not the safest and productive option. This seemed to be a common case for most people around the world, they were living longer, wanted to stay active and productive and do things that they couldn’t during the working life. I realised there is a big need and opportunity to build a safe place for people like my dad to come and meet peers his age and learn new skills or teach them to others.
This is why I started GetSetUp.
What is the objective?
We set out to build an online platform where older adults would train peers on software and services they could use to lead happier, healthier, and connected lives. This older demographic is projected to be 20% of the global population in the next 10 years. GetSetUp was founded with a focus on education since it always provides positive benefits. It sought to address a market that is overlooked – older adults.
The key goals of GetSetUp:
- Create a community for older adults who may face social isolation
- Provide a safe, fun, live, and interactive way for older adults to interact with their peers.
- Provide learning opportunities for older adults to help prevent cognitive decline and allow them to follow their dreams
- Provide a place for older adults to teach and share their skills with peers.
- Provide economic opportunities for older workers who are often find it difficult to get jobs
Why senior citizens? Are you able to reach out to them easily, in terms of tech and social media?
Senior citizens have knowledge, time and wisdom to share with the world. They can be the true “creators” of the digital economy which is based on content and experiences. We believe that if we help them get comfortable with technology and provide them with the tools to share their skills, it can unlock a lot of human potential and value. They are also projected to be 20% of the global population in the next 10 years. Yet, almost every business they studied was failing to recognize the uniqueness of this large and important demographic. For example in India alone, the older population is projected to cross 160 million by 2025 and surpass the number of kids under 14 by 2050. The overall seniorcare market is pegged at $5 billion in India.
GetSetUp.org is easy to use and makes classes available to members anytime, unlike more traditional education platforms that operate under a “book and schedule” approach.
We have a dedicated customer team that gets on a call with any interested individual once they register on the platform, or come via referral. We guide users step by step to create an account on GetSetUp and get started with our free classes.
What kind of sessions do you have for your target audience?
We offer over 800+ different classes every week and classes range from mental wellness classes to art & craft, music, dance and workout classes from home. Technology classes also teach older adults skills like using their delivery apps, booking doctors’ appointments and staying safe at home. We have also introduced a lot of social hours and interest groups where our community can come together to socialize and discuss any topic of their choice. We are also using our platform to host celebratory events like festivals and special days, which people are missing out on at this time as a large section of the adult population has been restricted in their regular lives and impacted heavily due to the ongoing pandemic.
Do you face any hurdles due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic?
We have been working in a remote setup since the inception of the company so it didn’t impact us much. It however made our work even more important and we had to scale up hiring, product and operations team to serve the senior demographic.
What kind of responses have you received?
In the 15 months since its founding, GetSetUp has achieved significant growth in partnerships and platform usage, including more than 2 million users in 160 countries and multiple partners, particularly in the health and wellness industry. During the past three months, GetSetUp users around the globe have logged more than 4 million active minutes on the platform by accessing the 500-plus hours of programming available each week. GetSetUp has localized sites in Australia and India, as well as in the US, and will soon launch sites in Singapore, Canada and the United Kingdom.
We get a lot of positive feedback everyday on our platform and on our Facebook community page. One of our learners reached out to us with this story and the positive impact GetSetUp has created in her life, “An extremely lazy person by nature, GetSetUp changed up my everyday lifestyle. I now wake up at 7:30am, start with a 1 hour walk & then set myself up for the first class of the day Laughter Club at 9:00am. Regular yoga collated with my walks & diet has helped me lose a lot of weight in the past few months”.
What are your future plans?
We are building GetSetUp as a global platform for older adults to learn, socialize, get active and contribute to our communities. We would like it to be a safe space for seniors to be curious and learn without judgments. New tools have opened up a world of possibilities for anyone to be an entrepreneur or a creator – then why should older adults be left behind? Why not empower them? By teaching them classes on Shopify, Instagram, Canva and digital marketing, we are bringing them into the creator economy. Once they learn some of the newer tech tools available to them, they can express better and continue engaging with their communities. It’s about empowerment and relevance. In fact with tech on their side, it is the younger generations that would benefit from their collective wisdom. Our aim is to fuel this empowered generation to come into the creator economy.