Allison is a digital reporter for the Bay of Plenty Times

New pair of 'steadying hands' leads Grey Power in Bay

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Jennifer Custins is the new president of Grey Power 10 June 2016 Bay of Plenty Times Photograph by John Borren
Jennifer Custins is the new president of Grey Power 10 June 2016 Bay of Plenty Times Photograph by John Borren

The Tauranga branch of Grey Power, an advocate group for the elderly, has a new president.

Jennifer Custins was voted in as the new president at Grey Power's AGM on Thursday night.

"It's a very rewarding feeling to become the new president. But it's slightly daunting taking over from Christina [Humphreys] who's done such a fabulous job," Ms Custins said.

She is no stranger to Grey Power or advocating for the elderly, having been a member of the committee as vice-president and treasurer, and as a member of the defunct Elderly Forum.

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Other commitments had taken her out of the scene for a while but she was back, ready to lead Grey Power with a "pair of steadying hands".

"The organisation is quite steady and strong ... I think [the nomination] was more just to have a pair of steadying hands at the moment," she said.

One thing Ms Custins would be bringing to the table was her experience with technology.

"I've embraced the technological age and I'm a bit younger than the average Grey Power member.

"You've just got to use the modern technology, it's quicker," Ms Custins said.

"One of my things will be to try and encourage older people to embrace technology and not be afraid or put off, because it is so much more efficient."

Her predecessor, Ms Humphreys, said she was leaving the presidency in capable hands.

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"For a job like this you need to know a little background and what goes on at Grey Power," she said.

Ms Custins was computer literate, unlike many in the older population, which would go a long way, she said.

"A lot of people that are older than us aren't computer-savvy, but these days you've got to be to look up things, do research, send emails.

"It's quite a responsibility, it's quite a hard job to do. I've had to learn on my feet," said Ms Humphreys.

"You're trying to learn every aspect of what's going on, what's affecting the elderly."

Ms Humphreys would be staying on as a committee member, and as the representative for the national Grey Power board, to help Grey Power keep "humming".

- Bay of Plenty Times

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