By Lauren Subia
If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that isolation and loneliness are real issues that have a major impact on personal health and well-being. In fact, according to the American Psychological Association, social isolation and loneliness significantly increases the risk for premature mortality and other health issues, especially as we get older. Shruti Gurudanti and Mayank Mishra, who both call 85254 home, are working hard to raise awareness about these detrimental effects.
“The one thing common amongst all of us regardless of where we come from is that we will get old, if we’re lucky! It is a problem that when you age, you will lose your ability to drive at some point, and that automatically leads to you having less interaction with your community, family, and friends,” says Gurudanti. “A shrinking of your social circle is unfortunately inevitable unless you can figure out a way to adapt to technology to stay connected. For that we need to build technology that is accessible to everyone.”
This is what kickstarted their mission to combat social isolation and loneliness by building technology that is easy-to-use and thus their social venture, Televeda, was born.
Founded by Mishra and Gurudanti in 2018, Televeda is a virtual events management platform that helps recreation centers, community centers, senior centers, hospital systems, and nonprofits to effortlessly deliver all their programs in a virtual/hybrid format and come into the modern world. This allows individuals to feel connected to their local communities no matter where they are.
“Millions of people nationwide depend on our local community centers, churches, etc. to find friendships and resources. Our goal is to help these organizations to expediently and smoothly bring their programs and activities directly to an individual within the comfort of their own home,” says Gurudanti. “Having a virtual/hybrid option is no longer a luxury but rather a consumer expectation today. So, at Televeda, we’ve focused on building an accessible platform that helps the most tech-shy audience to virtually connect with their local church, local recreational center, anything that’s happening in their cities, or any sort of program that’s being offered. They don’t have to feel disconnected from their community, family and friends just because they cannot drive!”
In addition to Televeda, Gurudanti volunteers as a board member for Duet: Partners In Health & Aging. Duet is a nonprofit organization that works to promote health and well-being through vitally needed services to homebound adults, family caregivers, faith communities, and grandfamilies, according to the nonprofit.
“I’m very lucky and honored that Duet has given me the opportunity to be on their board. I truly and completely believe in the mission that they focus on and really love the work they do for a demographic that’s often forgotten.”
Because of her work with both organizations, Televeda and Duet together with Cigna have partnered to attempt to set a new GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® title for the most viewers of a Bingo livestream on a bespoke platform. The event is on October 22 at 10 a.m. and seeks to heighten global awareness about social isolation but also to showcase how mature adults are defining aging by adapting to technology at lightning speed. It is free and open to everyone to play.
“I would love to invite the entire community—from kids to parents to grandparents—to participate in the world record bingo event for a cause. We are only as strong as when we come together and we do something as a community,” says Gurudanti.
To join in, register ahead of the event at televeda.com/bingo.