Being, belonging and bestowing: differing degrees of community involvement amongst rural elders in England and Wales

Curry, Nigel R and Fisher, Rhiannon (2013) Being, belonging and bestowing: differing degrees of community involvement amongst rural elders in England and Wales. European Journal of Ageing, 10 (4). pp. 325-333. doi:10.1007/s10433-013-0277-5

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Government exhortations for full community involvement in their locales in England and Wales have particular significance for rural elders as the literature suggests that they are amongst the most active in this sphere. But different people have different propensities to 'join in'. A taxonomy of different degrees of involvement in community is derived: antagonising, absenting, being, belonging, bestowing and communing. Being, belonging and bestowing are explored empirically, because they are the elements of principal concern to policy, making use of surveys of rural elders in six locations in England and Wales. A minority of respondents undertook bestowing activity (actively assisting others or taking part in voluntary activity) but most felt there were benefits from being (just living in a place) or belonging (having an identity with place) to a community. Of those who did not join in, most claimed that this was because they did not want to. Education and qualifications had the strongest association with 'joining in', although income and wealth per se had little impact. Two lessons for government community policy are important. First, many older people do not wish to 'join in', and second, the variables that tended to be associated with participation may not be that easy to influence through community policy. Keywords

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Author Keywords:Being; Belonging; Bestowing; Social capital KeyWords Plus:SOCIAL SUPPORT; GEOGRAPHIES; DEPRESSION; ATTACHMENT
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human geography. Human ecology. Anthropogeography
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > Countryside and Community Research Institute
Depositing User: Anne Pengelly
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2014 08:38
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2021 21:27

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