Digital economy agency partners Grab to launch scheme for seniors
Thailand's Digital Economy Promotion Agency (Depa) in collaboration with Grab Thailand has launched a support programme to equip seniors with digital skills.
The "Grab Wai Kao" (Grab for senior) initiative aims to boost their self-esteem and provide income opportunities.
The programme allows senior citizens aged over 60 years to utilise the Grab app as driver-partners to provide transport or delivery services to earn extra income.
The programme aims to support 3,000 people through the agency's network nationwide.
Depa president Nuttapon Nimmanphatcharin said the nation would soon become an ageing society. He cited the report of the Department of Older Persons, Interior Ministry which found that the number of the elderly in Thailand listed in house registration as of January 2022 has exceeded 12 million, or 18.3 per cent of the total population.
As an agency responsible for promoting the use of digital technology to enhance the quality of life of all, including elderly people, Nuttapon said the state agency places high importance on supporting the elderly to use digital technology to enhance their living.
The cooperation between Depa and Grab Thailand in introducing the "Grab Wai Kao" programme encourages senior citizens (aged over 60 years) to utilise the Grab app and their own vehicles to generate extra income.
"Not only can these seniors live independently, this will also help them elevate their self-esteem and make them feel proud of themselves”, said Nuttapon.
Worachat Luxkanalode, the executive director of Grab Thailand, said digital inclusion was an essential part of GrabForGood mission in supporting the future of work. Regardless of gender, age, education, or even physical limitations, such as hearing ability, Grab has provided everyone with an equal opportunity to utilise the Grab app as driver-or delivery-partners to provide transport and delivery services.
After the criminal background check is approved, elders only need to bring their own vehicles (motorbike or car), a service mindedness, courage to try new technology, and get out of their comfort zone, Worachat said.
“Currently, more than 3,700 driver-partners aged over 60 are on our platform. To others, they are seniors. To us, however, they are highly capable with vast experience, diligence and discretion. This group of people has more free time and does not want to be dependent," said Worachat.
For the "Grab Wai Kao" programme, the company has set up a team to support seniors throughout the entire process, from application to onboarding, training, as well as, providing ongoing support .
The programme will be promoted through Depa’s online and offline networks, including the Social Welfare Services for Older Persons, nursing homes, Department of Employment, the Internet Foundation for the development of Thailand, and the Ready Senior page.
Apart from age over 60 years, the other criteria of the driver-partners to join the "Grab Wai Kao" project is they hould have no criminal record, have a driving licence and own personal vehicles. An educational background is not required.
Grab, founded in 2012, is Southeast Asia’s leading superapp based on GMV in 2021 in each of food deliveries, mobility, and the e-wallets segment of financial services, according to Euromonitor. Grab operates across the deliveries, mobility, and digital financial services sectors in 480 cities in eight countries in Southeast Asia – Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.