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Going Solo: Exploring the intimate and broader relationships of older single women without children

Event information

START DATE 3 December 2014
START TIME 04:30pm

Committee Room 3
Middlesex University
The Burroughs, Hendon
London NW4 4BT

END DATE 3 December 2014
END TIME 06:30pm

Dr Trish Hafford-Letchfield, Nicky Lambert and Dr Hafiz Khan, with project members Dominique Brady (MA Social Work graduate) and Ellouise Long (Research Assistant) present Going Solo: Exploring the intimate and broader relationships of older single women without children and the implications for their support needs in later life.

This seminar builds on the findings of a scoping study funded by the Departments Small Grants during 2013-14. The first stage of the study involved collaboration within the department between social work and mental health in the area of ageing and wellbeing research. This study aimed to examine the impact of the rise in non-traditional family relationships on successful ageing, specifically for non-partnered women without children. Little is known about the life trajectories of non-partnered women without children as they age and research that seeks to understand these women's support networks, social connectedness and personal relationships, for example, is sparse. 

This study investigates these dynamics through an initial scoping study which aimed to:

  • Examine the literature to see how this specific group of women are recognised or positioned   within the discourse on ageing particularly in the arena of health and social care
  • Investigation any characteristics of this group through an initial demographic analysis.
  • Develop a survey to capture a sample of solo women and to consult them about possible future areas of research into their needs and circumstances.

Potential future benefits of identifying research in this area include reaching a unique but growing population in order to start theory-building about the role of caring on successful ageing and providing initial evidence to inform the direction that future research should take and the implications for professional policy and practice. Whilst still ongoing a longer term aim of our research is to generate some insights and debate into the future social and care support needs of women who may be excluded by relationship status from a range of support and care needs.

The seminar will share our findings of the scoping study so far and bring together relevant stakeholders for a debate on the main issues and findings.

We welcome the input of Jody Day, founder of Gateway Women, an organisation which hosts an online community and promotes the wellbeing and contribution of women who have not had children. Jody has been active in engaging stakeholders on issues for women without children as they age.

We will also be tweeting live with the hashtag #WomenGoingSolo. If you can't join us in person, please join us online!

For more information and to RSVP, please contact Alfonso Pezzella.

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