First Wave Intergen Tech Program

is a collaborative program that engages youth with older adults and immigrants, in learning to use technology on a daily basis and be better prepared in times of need.

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FIRST WAVE is a free technology program led by youth in the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance (RWA), intended to connect young people, who are up to date on technology, with older adults and immigrants to teach them to use social media, the internet and cell phone technology.

First Wave meets every week at the RISE Center located at 58-03 Rockaway Beach Boulevard, Rockaway, NY. To find out the schedule for classes contact us at:

Please check out the oral history project done by Rockaway high school teens in partnership with the seniors at the JASA Brookdale Village Center in Far Rockaway.

First Wave was first developed by RWA after Storm Sandy, to connect youth with vulnerable populations of senior citizens and immigrants to teach them to use technology in emergency disasters. RWA worked closely with NYC Office of Emergency Management and other local community groups to connect them to the city's Notify NYC Alert System.

In doing so we learned that people under the age of 40 are more adept at using technology as well as teaching others how to use it on a daily basis to keep them more actively engaged in their own community.  While people over the age of 40 struggle with the "digital divide" to keep up with rapid changes in technology and communications.  

RWA is working in collaboration with senior centers and places of worship in the Rockaways to host intergenerational classes with high school students as teachers to develop communication tools that can be used daily to improve their lives and connect them with resources that may be needed both socially and in emergency situations.

Our community assessment survey was first developed for use in emergency situations and has been useful in determining what type of technology the public has accessible to them.

Please click here to fill out our community assessment survey so we can better understand the technology needs of our community. All responses are anonymous and this information is not made public.

First Wave Program is sponsored by the NY State Governors Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR) and the NY State Rising Program.