TITLE

The Impact of the “Village” Model on Health, Well-Being, Service Access, and Social Engagement of Older Adults

AUTHOR(S)
Graham, Carrie L.; Scharlach, Andrew E.; Price Wolf, Jennifer
PUB. DATE
October 2014
SOURCE
Health Education & Behavior;Oct2014 Supplement, Vol. 41 Issue 1, p91S
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Background. Villages represent an emerging consumer-driven social support model that aims to enhance the social engagement, independence, and well-being of community-dwelling seniors through a combination of social activities, volunteer opportunities, service referral, and direct assistance. This study aimed to assess the perceived impact of Village membership on factors associated with the likelihood of aging in place. Additionally, the research examines the characteristics and service use of members who benefit the most. Method. Perceived impacts of Village membership in the areas of social engagement, service access, health and well-being, and self-efficacy for maintaining independence were assessed through a survey of 282 active Village members from five sites in California. Bivariate and multivariate analyses examined associations between member characteristics, volunteerism, service use, and self-reported impacts. Results. Villages have the strongest impact in the area of promoting social engagement and facilitating access to services. Three quarters of the participants report that the Village increases their ability to age in place. Positive impacts were associated with level of Village involvement, but less likely among members who had worse self-reported health. Conclusion. Villages represent a promising new model designed to support community-dwelling seniors with a number of positive impacts that may reduce social isolation, improve well-being, and increase confidence aging in place. Villages appear to have the greatest benefit for members who are most involved and fewer positive impacts for members in poor health, prompting questions about the long-term effectiveness of the Village model in helping more frail seniors to age in place.
ACCESSION #
98672537

 

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