Family caregiving of the elderly in Botswana: Boundaries of culturally acceptable options and resources

Sheila Shaibu, Margaret I. Wallhagen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Care of the elderly in Botswana is solely a family responsibility. In the absence of formal programs for the elderly it is important to understand the cultural beliefs that guide decision making regarding acceptance of elderly care. The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of family caregivers to older persons in Botswana. Using grounded theory methodology, 24 caregivers who were caring for an older person were interviewed. The findings indicate that the perceptions that guided the caregivers' decision making process of acceptance or non-acceptance of assistance from both family members and the government fell into three inter-related but distinct categories: Stigma, Appropriate-inappropriate forms of care; and Sense of Place. It is recommended that cultural sensitivity should be considered in designing models of support for families who are looking after their older relatives. Finally, a clear understanding of the perceptions of family members' needs must be emphasized as these differ from health workers' perceptions of family needs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-154
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Cross-Cultural Gerontology
Volume17
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Botswana
  • Culturally sensitive care
  • Elderly care
  • Family caregiving

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