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What has neighbourhood cohesion to do with informal care?

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What has neighbourhood cohesion to do with informal care?

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Samenvatting

The Social Support Act came into effect on 1 January 2007. The purpose of the new legislation is to enable citizens who are dependent on the support of the Municipality and those living around them to be able to live independently for as long as possible. Organizing informal care is one of the main targets of this policy. In the realization of this act several assumptions about informal care giving were implied. In this paper three of them are examined.
The first assumption is that neighbourly cohesion will lead to exchanging neighbourly support. On the other hand it is assumed that a lack of neighbourly cohesion impedes neighbourly support. The second assumption is that there is an imminent shortfall in the supply of informal care. The third assumption is that healthy people (are expected to) help the vulnerable and that they have to be stimulated to do so.
The findings are based on qualitative in-depth interviews, conducted in a small Dutch neighbourhood in Eindhoven, called Drents Dorp.
It is argued that all three assumptions need revision in order that informal care policy can be more effective. This study shows that the relationship between neighbourhood cohesion and informal care is not clear cut. Neighbourliness is individualized, but this doesn't mean that neighbours don't support each other: they do, but on an individual one-to-one basis. Furthermore, the most vulnerable inhabitants are not reached by social interventions aimed at enhancing social cohesion.
The assumed shortfall in the supply of informal care turns out to be a shortage in the demand of informal care. Due to their fear of dependency and pursuit of autonomy and independence, people hesitate to ask for support. This is far more an impediment for informal care than the alleged shortfall in supply.
The assumption that the strong will support the vulnerable also needs adjustment. At least an important part of the exchange of support takes place between vulnerable people mutually.

Toon meer
OrganisatieFontys Hogescholen
AfdelingFontys Hogeschool Sociaal Werk
Jaar2010
TypeConferentiebijdrage
TaalOnbekend

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