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Family Caregiving to the Elderly: Positive Experiences of Caregivers in Two Urban Poor Communities in Accra, Ghana

Frank Kyei-Arthur, Regional Institue for Population Studies, University of Ghana.
Samuel Codjoe, University of Ghana
Delali Badasu, Regional Institute for Population Studies
Deborah Atobrah, Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana

In Ghana and other sub-Saharan African countries, the family is primarily responsible for the care and support of the elderly. Research has established that family caregivers of the elderly can experience both positive and negative outcomes from caregiving. However, most studies on family caregiving to the elderly have mainly focused on negative outcomes of caregiving to the detriment of positive outcomes. This study explored the rewards caregivers derived from caring for the elderly. Thirty-one caregivers were recruited and interviewed in two urban communities (James Town and Ussher Town) in Accra. The interviews were audio taped, transcribed and analysed thematically. Nine themes regarding rewards were identified: gifts, blessing, skills acquisition, honour, enhanced personal attribute, asset, access to accommodation, family cohesion, and health consciousness. This study could help researchers and policymakers to gain a better understanding of experiences of family caregivers.

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  Presented in Session 142. Long-Term Care and Wellbeing in Later Life: The Role of Self Agency, and Formal and Informal Systems