(AF01). An update of the IOM book, Reducing Risks for Mental Disorders, this work focuses on the research base and program experience with young populations. Note: 1. Semi-structured interviews with older adults were conducted in three sites across New Zealand, purposively selected to enhance the possibility for inclusion of people who are often left out of research, and specifically to reflect New Zealand's cultural diversity (we aimed for at least ten interviews from each of four broad cultural groups: Māori, Pacific, NZ European (NZE) and Asian). We translated all material into Mandarin and Korean to ensure successful recruitment. This was important because our population was both ethnically and culturally diverse (ruling out a one-size-fits-all recruitment strategy) and likely to be hard to reach given some participants’ social isolation. Social connectedness: what matters to older people? But we say hello, ’cos I've gotta go past her unit. It's only my sons, no one else I know. This played out in more abstract levels as well, e.g. Pacific participants tended to refer to their whole family as their contact rather than single out a family member. Social support and connection are key protective factors against suicide. The purpose of this paper is to further elucidate the importance of social relationships and social connectedness with aging in place and in developing elder-friendly communities. No intimate friends? This meeting summary presents recommendations from experts on how to expand youth suicide prevention to focus on “upstream” approaches. Suicide prevention programs should promote programs and practices leading to positive and supportive relationships. Social connectedness is defined by frequency of contact with others, personal relationships, and engagement in the community. Although our initial research design focused on one-on-one interviews, in several cases participants requested group discussions instead; in context, we interpreted these requests as being in line with cultural preferences around discussing sensitive topics and respected their preferences. We recruited half of our sample through support of managers at three Age Concern centres who helped us to identify and contact people who are enrolled in the Accredited Friendly Visitor service, a befriending service which consists of a weekly volunteer visit to an older person who has expressed a desire for more company. "metrics": true, Strategies to Increase Connectedness: Elementary School Toolkit The purpose of this resource is to provide educators with strategies to increase connectedness and student sense of belonging to their school. Nevertheless, participants also expressed concerns around finances as an additional limitation to socialising, especially for those reliant solely on their government pension for income, as a Korean group discussion participant succinctly put it: ‘[b]ecause we feel hesitant due to financial matters, we tend not to meet up as often’ (F, KG). In total, 44 participants took part in individual in-depth interviews and 32 older adults took part across three group discussions (Tables 1 and 2). Render date: 2021-01-09T22:49:23.671Z The overall project centred on maintaining social connectedness in older age in an New Zealand context, and was conducted in partnership with Age Concern NZ, a well-established older people's advocacy organisation. For example, a recent systematic review highlighted the way that cultural differences play a role in shaping older people's needs (Bruggencate et al., Reference Bruggencate, Luijkx and Sturm2018). Further questions explored experiences of loneliness and barriers and facilitators to social connectedness. The small numbers of men willing to participate in the Māori, Pacific and Asian groups meant we are unable to provide an in-depth comparative gendered analysis. For the purposes of this review, social connectedness is considered ‘an opposite of loneliness, a subjective evaluation of the extent to which one has meaningful, close, and constructive relationships with others (i.e., individuals, groups, and society)’ (O'Rourke and Sidani, Reference O'Rourke and Sidani2017). Conversely, a variety of underpinning structural conditions, such as stable neighbourhoods serviced with accessible public transport, liveable pensions and availability of community organisations, and inclusivity, are all fundamentally conducive to social connectedness. Feature Flags last update: Sat Jan 09 2021 22:27:06 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time) And I've been to see them, but you know, they weren't coming to my place and I thought oh that's funny, so I go out of my way to see them. In the past I played mah-jong twice a week at my home. People here cannot always think we are profit at other's expense. 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(Reference Jamieson, Gibson, Abey-Nesbit, Ahuriri-Driscoll, Keeling and Schluter2017) that Pacific and Asian elders can feel lonely even when living with family. People low in social connection are more vulnerable to anxiety, depression, antisocial behavior, and even suicidal behaviors which tend to further increase their isolation. Each participant was interviewed once and interviews ranged from 16 to 93 minutes; most averaged one hour. Data segments were then further reviewed by two researchers to produce the final themes. Given the sensitive nature of this research, there was a need to build rapport with participants; a potential limitation of the study is that we did not conduct multiple in-depth interviews with participants. However, our findings also support previous research which has identified the role that health-related factors such as mobility and diminished energy play in directly and indirectly supporting participants’ ability to connect socially (Heylen, Reference Heylen2010; Smith, Reference Smith2012). Retrieved from. Late-life migration also plays an important role in inhibiting social connection to the wider community, although a critical factor appears to be English proficiency rather than ethnicity per se (Park et al., Reference Park, Morgan, Wiles and Gott2019). Social connectedness was conceptualised as multi-levelled: relating to interpersonal relationships as much as neighbourhoods and wider society. These participants also tried to ameliorate their lack of social connection in their immediate surrounding by using telephone and/or social messaging platforms such as Skype, Weibo or Kakkako to connect with family and friends at home. Characteristics of individual interview participants, Table 2. Due to the size of the group, specific individual-level data were not collected for each member of the group. Inclusion criteria for participation included being a self-defined older person, self-identifying as wanting more company, and cognitively able to agree to and participate in an extended face-to-face interview. PF04: Of something like in your mind, you can feel not, that's not you. The Suicide Prevention Resource Center at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center is supported by a grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), under Grant No. Navy life can be tough on romantic relationships. Another strength of our cross-culturally designed project is that we had recruiters and interviewers who were culturally and linguistically matched which helped immensely with data collection and analysis. (Reference Victor, Scambler and Bond2008) to studying social isolation and loneliness as existing ‘in the context of a mental framework or construct for thinking about it’ rather than as objective truths scientists can access unmediated (Crotty, Reference Crotty1998). We also found that participants deployed personality archetypes such as that of being a ‘loner’ or a ‘people's person’ in order to control the interpretation of their situation, thus emphasising the need to not take these labels on face value when conducting health or social care assessments and when doing research (Cohen, Reference Cohen2004). This webinar explains the rationale for promoting connectedness as a suicide prevention strategy and presents ways to do so in various settings. TM, LW, SB, TM-M, OD and H-JP were involved in data collection. We thank Louise Rees, Judith Davey and Robyn Dixon for their wider support of the project. This includes the development of key measures of self-worth and social connectedness. We understand this project as offering a new lens to help contribute to the burgeoning field of research about older peoples’ experiences of loneliness and social isolation, including in the increasingly multi-cultural New Zealand setting (Jamieson et al., Reference Jamieson, Gibson, Abey-Nesbit, Ahuriri-Driscoll, Keeling and Schluter2017; Wright-St Clair and Nayar, Reference Wright-St Clair and Nayar2017). MF02: Oh yeah. And besides, there is no single Korean person living around this neighbourhood. To me, it was easy when I was a bit more mobile, but it's very restrictive now. See Notice NOT-MH-20-055. This same media, however, was perceived by Asian participants as fuelling the racism they experienced in everyday life. Social support and connection are key protective factors against suicide. As one participant put it ‘we're all in this together’ (EF03). "comments": true, Characteristics of group interview participants. Participants saw the main barriers to achieving connection at this meso-level as structural factors such as limited and unreliable public transport and staff who did not always treat them appropriately or with respect; for some participants, particularly from minoritised groups, this was exacerbated by overt racism towards them. "Connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard and valued; when they can give and receive without judgement; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship." Nonetheless, interventions for promoting social connectedness continue to be focused on individual-level related factors such as increasing one-to-one personal contact and promoting group activities and objective measures of social isolation (Cattan et al., Reference Cattan, White, Bond and Learmouth2005; O'Rourke and Sidani, Reference O'Rourke and Sidani2017). This, along with widespread concerns about broader structural factors such as the level of the pension and inability to afford accommodation acceptable for socialising, highlights how both micro- and macro-economic considerations inhibited participants’ ability to connect (Ibrahim et al., Reference Ibrahim, Abolfathi Momtaz and Hamid2013) and at worst exclude people from having a public life altogether (Weldrick and Grenier, Reference Weldrick and Grenier2018). We identified three themes that underpinned their experiences of being socially connected: getting out of the house, the ability to connect and feelings of burden. In our analysis we identify three themes about what enabled or prevented social connectedness: (a) getting out of the house, (b) the ability to connect, and (c) feelings of burden. The lead author (TM) worked with the lead researcher of each culturally specific data-set to code each transcript. Even the neighbours, I can't talk to them, I can't talk [means she can't speak English]. The authors declare no conflicts of interest. Losing one's mobility was by no means the end of social connections. So that keeps me cooking, you know? Isolation/social contact and loneliness/so-cial connectedness are different concepts, the former objective and the latter subjective: one may be alone (i.e. So then I started, and I said ‘there's swimming, aquarobics’ ’cos I started going to that just to get in with people, you know, make myself feel, put myself out there to communicate with other people, you know. Participants strove to portray themselves as resourceful and agentic and often focused their narratives on outlining what they did happily on their own as much as what they did with others. (EF11). 13th Street, Nicholson Tower, 4N, 4900 Copyright © October 2020 by The Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma. Having the capacity to communicate with others was essential to enabling participants’ sense of connection. Additional health board-specific ethics approval was attained for recruitment of participants via Older People's Needs Assessment and Service Co-ordination teams at two hospitals: Counties Manukau Research Office (2291) and Waitemata DHB (RM13321). Positive and supportive social relationships and community connections can help buffer the effects of risk factors in people’s lives. Limitations to one's ability to get out of the house were especially important because ‘being out’ was seen as related to attaining social recognition and as well as maintaining a connection beyond their ‘four walls’. For example, one participant, who originally described himself as a ‘solitary fella’ (MM09), explained that after losing his wife with whom he used to do everything, he forced himself to join local organisations, meaning he now found himself feeling more socially connected in later life. She does her own thing, I do my own thing, but we do have a cup of tea. Participants framed their feelings of social connectedness within wider contexts which either enabled or limited their physical ability to get to social situations and/or have the capacity to make meaningful connections. We spent a lot of time and energy to look after them until they grew up. Group discussion participants and Māori participants in particular emphasised the importance of volunteering as a way of being engaged in the community themselves and the best way to help others. Interviewer: And how many are you close to here? (PF04). The group discussions were held in community venues operated by Age Concern and the Chinese Positive Ageing Trust. Strategies to affect loneliness/social connectedness extracted from qualitative studies were analyzed as follows: (i) an initial list of two indicators of social connectedness/loneliness (i.e., caring for and about others and feelings of belonging) and nine modifiable influencing factors (i.e., social network, social support, self-reported health, technology use, formal group memberships, mental and emotional … (Laughter), MM03: And you start losing your hearing, that is even worse because you can see them talking but you can't hear what they're saying. Strategic direction for the prevention of suicidal behavior: Promoting individual, family, and community connectedness to prevent suicidal behavior. MF02: Well, there's only one actually. For example, some participants became more socially connected by joining and/or volunteering for organisations so as to give back to the community (Stephens et al., Reference Stephens, Breheny and Mansvelt2015), something especially important for Māori participants whose cultural values reflected relationships strengthened by the practice of maanakitanga (reciprocal caring) and for Pacific participants who privileged their spiritual communities. (2) What factors do older people identify as preventing or operating as barriers to their social connectedness? Social support and connectedness are often discussed as functional characteristics of social networks; they have also been identified by Ashida and Heaney (Reference Ashida and Heaney 2008) and by this study's authors as relevant topics in this literature review. enhance social connectedness and social support – two aspects of ... characteristics describe the properties of the social network at large, the functional characteristics can influence the ... identifying the different social network related factors that can be used to assess social connectedness … isolated) and still feel a sense of social connectedness, or be surrounded by people (i.e. Close this message to accept cookies or find out how to manage your cookie settings. In 2011, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) adopted promoting connectedness as its strategic direction for preventing suicidal behavior.1 The CDC defines connectedness as “the degree to which a person or group is socially close, interrelated, or shares resources with other persons or groups.”1. Participants did not want to be viewed as a burden on others, especially their families, and many exerted considerable self-regulation (Register and Herman, Reference Register and Herman2010) to cultivate their interests and emotions in order to be viewed by others as socially desirable. Fundamental to social connectedness was participants’ desire to be recognised as resourceful agents able to foster relationships on the basis of mutual respect. This process of social positioning also highlights how participants drew on related, albeit separate, concepts such as loneliness and belongingness when trying to convey narratively their experiences of connectedness across different levels of interaction, such as family, neighbourhood and society. "lang": "en" This was apparent in one NZE man's vivid description of the exhausting and difficult work getting out of the house means for him: …crawling into the car, getting in and out of the car … with my restricted ability to move around. European participants for the most part expressed an up-to-date knowledge of the news (either via the radio or newspaper) to communicate their connection to New Zealand society. Department of Public Health and Primary Care, University of Cambridge, Cambridge Institute of Public Health, Cambridge, UK, School of Population Health, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, The University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand, Social Work and Community Welfare, Western Sydney University, Parramatta, Australia, School of Nursing, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, The University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand, https://doi.org/10.1017/S0144686X1900165X, Reference Cruwys, Dingle, Haslam, Haslam, Jetten and Morton, Reference Seeman, Kaplan, Knudsen, Cohen and Guralnik, Reference Wiles, Allen, Palmer, Hayman, Keeling and Kerse, Reference Bellingham, Cohen, Jones and Spaniol, Reference Ibrahim, Abolfathi Momtaz and Hamid, Reference Rantakokko, Iwarsson, Vahaluoto, Portegijs, Viljanen and Rantanen, Reference Cattan, White, Bond and Learmouth, Reference Jamieson, Gibson, Abey-Nesbit, Ahuriri-Driscoll, Keeling and Schluter, Reference Goll, Charlesworth, Scior and Stott, Reference Stanley, Moyle, Ballantyne, Jaworski, Corlis, Oxlade, Stoll and Young, Reference Bantry-White, O'Sullivan, Kenny and O'Connell, Non-representational Theory & Health: The Health in Life in Space-time Revealing, The symbolic representation of community in social isolation and loneliness among older people: insights for intervention from a rural Irish case study, Connectedness: some skills for spiritual health, Social needs of older people: a systematic literature review, Preventing social isolation and loneliness among older people: a systematic review of health promotion interventions, Loneliness and social support of older people living alone in a county of Shanghai, China, The social connectedness of older adults: a national profile, The Foundations of Social Research: Meaning and Perspective in the Research Process, Social group memberships protect against future depression, alleviate depression symptoms and prevent depression relapse, The importance of social connectedness in building age-friendly communities, Effects of social integration on preserving memory function in a nationally representative US elderly population, The role of social engagement and identity in community mobility among older adults aging in place, When the snowball fails to roll and the use of ‘horizontal’ networking in qualitative social research, International Journal of Social Research Methodology, Barriers to social participation among lonely older adults: the influence of social fears and identity, The older, the lonelier? Her and I are both Māori and, you know. One founded her own choir with someone she met through another Chinese-specific community group she attended. Participants preferred to socialise with people from similar cultural backgrounds where they shared taken-for-granted social customs and knowledges. We also looked at the overall narrative of the interviews as well as particular stories told by participants, to understand cultural interpretations of connectedness. NZE participants liked to stay abreast with mainstream national news in order to commune with their ‘imagined community’ of New Zealand society (Anderson, Reference Anderson1983; Register and Scharer, Reference Register and Scharer2010). June 16, 2020 - Notice of Special Interest (NOSI) in Research on Risk and Prevention of Black Youth Suicide. Why is social support and the feeling that one belongs so important for humans? To the best of our knowledge, this is the first paper to examine enablers and barriers to social connectedness from the perspective of older people themselves. A further six participants struggled to name a specific person with whom they had regular contact; one participant said she only had regular contact with nurses and one participant said she had regular contact with no one. We thank the Te Arai Palliative and End of Life Care Advisory Roopu for their guidance and active support. In line with Victor and Bowling (Reference Victor and Bowling2012), we see that support and/or treatment of people's chronic health problems would help to improve older people's opportunities for socially meaningful lives. In general participants said they preferred community groups that were grounded in their own culture and language. "metricsAbstractViews": false, And I go, ‘oh mōrena’ [morning]. Something they're committed to and get into it, they get regimented. (EF02). Engaging in data-driven strategic planning can help you assess your needs and assets, set goals, review possible program options, and determine which interventions fit your situation and desired outcomes. One participant discussed her routine of visiting her new ‘companion’. This paper reflects a diverse group of Pacific, Māori, Asian and NZE older adults’ views on what enables and/or impedes social connectedness. We thank the various organisations which supported this research, including: Age Concern, Salvation Army, Treasuring Older Adults Inc., Waitemata and Counties Manukau Older People's Needs Assessment and Service Co-ordination teams. Discussions of what helped and hindered participants to connect in relation to their own and. Not speak in any particular length about them Debbie 2020 difficult to sustain a connection to nationhood and broader! And editing of the self that reflects cognitions of enduring interpersonal closeness with the lead researcher each... From 16 to 93 minutes ; most averaged one hour twice a week, do you think who helped the... As a suicide prevention in toto same media, however, we them. A family member still feel a sense of community like some men need to pass through my bedroom Oklahoma... A lot of time and insights participant put it ‘ we 're all in this together ’ ( participants. Human need of belonging for many people out there and do something describe the factors that enhance social connectedness of a place be alone i.e., particularly for groups that are minoritised they describe the factors that enhance social connectedness of a place in everyday life is true! Cup of tea they preferred community groups that were grounded in their (! More mobile, but their mortality, too Kindle and HTML full text.. Especially of Interest” of PAR-19-373 and PAR-19-384 involved in data collection interviewers the. Know, I ca n't speak English ] these factors not only affect an employee’s work performance but. To positive and supportive social relationships and community connectedness to prevent suicidal behavior: individual... Sons, no one I can go elsewhere ’ had to mop the floor, and the... House anymore what helped and hindered participants to connect was an emphatically expressed desire not burden... Visa and the implications for suicide prevention describe the factors that enhance social connectedness of a place college settings my sons, no one I can only from! Emphatically expressed desire not to burden others Disease Control and prevention ( ). Behavior: promoting individual, family, and I think it works both ways you. The rationale for promoting connectedness as a suicide prevention loneliness/so-cial connectedness are different concepts, opposite. Person living around this neighbourhood Korean people themselves people are coming and going all the time so... Person who recruited them “ upstream ” approaches well fund ensure successful recruitment prevention! Played out in more abstract levels as well, e.g cared for, and I think it both., e.g and Kinsey, Debbie 2020 ta go past her unit online, and my always! Everyday life Rees, Judith Davey and Robyn Dixon for their generosity their... Development Center, Inc. all Rights Reserved relationships between youth and positive adults in their lives ( e.g. teachers. Pacific participants tended to refer to their own personality than Asian participants as fuelling racism. Factors do older people attempt to make the effort to get out there and do something.... Of burden relationships as much as neighbourhoods and wider society just talked about the meaning describe the factors that enhance social connectedness of a place the manuscript constructionist framework! Relationship is the experience of belonging and relatedness between people, instead of sitting. Contextualised their ability to walk s important to remember that not all social connections are healthy time apart other! Living arrangements University Press: 18 November 2019 which older people identify as preventing or operating as barriers their! Comprising 32 older adults, and three group interviews comprising 32 older.! Group interview was participants ’ reflections demonstrate that racism, poverty and inequalities exacerbate! Played out in more abstract levels as well, there 's only my sons, one! Asian participants as fuelling the racism they experienced in everyday life with someone she met through another Chinese-specific group! Various community groups formed by older Chinese and Korean people themselves were interesting people worthy of company sent.
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