K4Community offers more freedom for seniors

K4Connect unveils smart technology geared toward the elderly and people with disabilities

RALEIGH — Seniors and technology are sometimes not the friendliest pair, but a Raleigh startup is attempting to change that with K4Community.K4Community provides for seniors and people with disabilities a “huge opportunity to use technology to help those folks live simpler, healthier and happier lives — have more vibrant lives, and ultimately remove a lot of the barriers that have been there,” according to Derek Holt, the president of K4Connect.The technology is being piloted at various retirement communities across the state, including at The Cardinal at North Hills.”A major focus of The Cardinal is hospitality. K4Connect’s platform, K4Community, provides the insights and analytics needed to offer first-class care, differentiated hospitality and operational excellence,” executive director Tom Ford stated. “A major hospitality benefit that comes with K4Community is improved and optimized operational efficiency. This technology, on the operator end, frees up staff time to focus on creating great experiences for residents, and assists our hospitality team in anticipating residents’ needs.”K4Community can automatically turn on the lights at night, so a senior can get up safely and move around the home. The technology also has reminders, a newsletter portion that can save money on printing, and other ways for seniors to have more control over their lives.Ford said with K4Community the residents are able to live more independently.”Residents can control things like thermostats and light switches from their tablets (included at no cost), smartphone or other connected devices,” Ford stated. “They are able to track their health, and stay connected to family, friends and fellow residents. K4Community is helping residents stay connected and socially active, and enables them to live as independently as possible for a longer period of time.”The technology is geared toward people in their mid- to upper-70s.”If you want to think about the spectrum of folks that we serve, the ability to teach yourself and empower yourself is ultimately something that drives purpose and engagement and frankly confidence,” Holt said. “We have this great opportunity to repurposing this structure of guides to help folks really empower themselves and not feel like you failed.”Holt said the majority of people who go through the pilot program continue to use K4Community, which challenges the statement seniors don’t like technology.”This is the demographic that has been consistently thought of as not liking technology or even hating technology,” Holt said. “Our argument is ‘Look they don’t like technology that is designed for people 50 years their junior just like they don’t like music or television shows or clothing, but it seems crazy that they wouldn’t like technology for technology sake. They use televisions. They use refrigerators. That’s all technology.'”