Responding to rural social care needs: Older people empowering themselves, others and their community

  • Walsh K
  • O'Shea E
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Older adult active retirement groups encompass health promotion, social and community psychological potential. However, little is known about the internal dynamics of these groups or their contribution to individual well-being and the community. This paper examines the Third Age Foundation as an example of one such group operating in a rural area in Ireland and explores the various relationships at work internally and externally. Methodology included: structured and semi-structured interviews, focus groups and a postal survey. A substantial contribution to members' well-being and community competence and cohesion was found. Findings are discussed in reference to the importance of individual and community empowerment, sustainability, social entrepreneurship/leadership and the potential of such models to support community-based living in older age. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Active retirement groups
  • Capacity building
  • Community cohesion
  • Empowerment
  • Older people
  • Rural Ireland

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  • Kieran Walsh

  • Eamon O'Shea

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