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Older People find Hope in the
Informal Settlements of
Nairobi, Kenya
1MSc Gerontology programme, Faculty of Social & Human...
Outline
• Research Questions
• Background
• Study
• Data and methods
• Preliminary results
• Discussion and implications
•...
Research Questions
• What role does faith, spirituality and religious
organisations play in the lives of older people livi...
Background
• Ageing in sub Saharan Africa
• Ageing in informal settlements
• Growing literature on spirituality and
succes...
Population and religion
1949 1999 2010 2020
over60 270,000 1.4 mill 1.5 mill 2.2mill
Total pop 5.4 mill 28.7mill 36.5 mill...
Study Context
• Current research based upon qualitative data conducted in 2
slum areas, Korogocho & Viwandani, in Nairobi,...
Study area: Nairobi city
Source: UN-Habitat (2004)
Nairobi
© APHRC (2000) file pictures
Data and methods
• Secondary analysis of 72 qualitative interviews
• 5 number of in-depth interviews with faith-
based ser...
Population pyramid 2003-2005
in Korogocho and Viwandani.
10
Esther Clift BSG July 6 2011 11
Esther Clift BSG July 6 2011 12
Preliminary results
• Aspects of positive Spirituality/religiosity
• Roles of religious institutions
– Spiritual
– practic...
Letting older people speak for themselves:
1. Positive Spirituality:
Definition: an expression of both belief and action w...
1. Positive Spirituality:
QAKMB01040 ‘ We just pray to God to sustain us. You
wake up and go out, if you get something sma...
2. Role of religious organisations
• QAVFB02067: ‘I have some friends who I associate
with through the prayer meetings, an...
3. Barriers to participation
• QAKFB03047 ‘at times I am not able to afford food, where can I get
money to be contributing...
4. Evidence of Syncretism
• DW BO285: ‘where there is scarcity in the country, for
example, food scarcity and people are h...
Conceptual pathway:
19
Discussion & Implications
• Key findings:
HOPE
Lack of understanding
• Implications:
Exclusion/Isolation.
• Recommendation...
21
How could faith-based agencies in
the slums better meet the needs of
older people?
22
Acknowledgement
References
• Amuyunzu-Nyamongo, M., and Ezeh, A. C. (2005) 'A Qualitative Assessment of Support
Mechanisms in Informal Set...
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Esther Clift - Older People find hope in the informal settlements of Nairobi, Kenya

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Esther Clift - Older People find hope in the informal settlements of Nairobi, Kenya

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Esther Clift - Older People find hope in the informal settlements of Nairobi, Kenya

  1. 1. Older People find Hope in the Informal Settlements of Nairobi, Kenya 1MSc Gerontology programme, Faculty of Social & Human Sciences University of Southampton; 2Centre for Research on Ageing ,University of Southampton www.southampton.ac.uk/ageing Esther Clift1 Maria Evandrou2 and Gloria Chepngeno-Langat2
  2. 2. Outline • Research Questions • Background • Study • Data and methods • Preliminary results • Discussion and implications • Next steps 2
  3. 3. Research Questions • What role does faith, spirituality and religious organisations play in the lives of older people living in informal urban settlements in Nairobi? • What are the barriers to older people participating in organised groups within the informal settlements? • Under what circumstances are older people likely to take up the spiritual support offered to them? 3
  4. 4. Background • Ageing in sub Saharan Africa • Ageing in informal settlements • Growing literature on spirituality and successful ageing in north America and Europe (Coleman 2005; Sadler and Biggs 2006) • To what extent do these links persist in a low income setting in the global south? (Kodzi et al 2010) 4
  5. 5. Population and religion 1949 1999 2010 2020 over60 270,000 1.4 mill 1.5 mill 2.2mill Total pop 5.4 mill 28.7mill 36.5 mill 43.1 mill %pop over 60 5% 4.8% 4.1% 5.1% Religion • Protestant 45% • Catholic 33% • Indigenous 10% • Muslim 10% • Other 2% 5 adapted from the 1999 National Population and Housing Census Report
  6. 6. Study Context • Current research based upon qualitative data conducted in 2 slum areas, Korogocho & Viwandani, in Nairobi, Kenya. • African Population Health and Research Centre (APHRC) • UPHD Ageing Qualitative Study • Part of the Nairobi Urban Health and Demographic Surveillance System (NUHDSS) • Investigating migration, poverty & health across the life course among slum dwellers in Nairobi • Quantitative data collected from members from about 22,000 households • Study operating since Aug 2002, funded by Wellcome Trust • In collaboration with University of Southampton CRA 6
  7. 7. Study area: Nairobi city Source: UN-Habitat (2004) Nairobi
  8. 8. © APHRC (2000) file pictures
  9. 9. Data and methods • Secondary analysis of 72 qualitative interviews • 5 number of in-depth interviews with faith- based service providers (new primary data collection) • Content analysis • Thematic analysis ( e.g.practical support) Esther Clift BSG July 6 2011 9
  10. 10. Population pyramid 2003-2005 in Korogocho and Viwandani. 10
  11. 11. Esther Clift BSG July 6 2011 11
  12. 12. Esther Clift BSG July 6 2011 12
  13. 13. Preliminary results • Aspects of positive Spirituality/religiosity • Roles of religious institutions – Spiritual – practical challenges • Barriers to participation • Areas of syncretism 13
  14. 14. Letting older people speak for themselves: 1. Positive Spirituality: Definition: an expression of both belief and action which is defined as a personal quest for meaning and purpose in life (Atchley 1997 ) Ortez and Langer( 2002) components of positive spirituality: a. Connecting with others b. Transcendent presence c. Power of living d. Manifest expression e. Meaning making 2. Role of religious organisations 3. Barriers to participation 4. Evidence of Syncretism 14
  15. 15. 1. Positive Spirituality: QAKMB01040 ‘ We just pray to God to sustain us. You wake up and go out, if you get something small in terms of income, you thank God for it.’ QAKMA01045 ‘when things are hard you can only tell God to take control.’ QAKFB02069 ‘most times we depend on God for provision’. QAVFB02068 ‘I praise God every day.’ QAVFA02036 ‘ I am ok, I don’t mind what I am doing and it is not good to despise what God has given you.’ 15
  16. 16. 2. Role of religious organisations • QAVFB02067: ‘I have some friends who I associate with through the prayer meetings, and we advise each other on life issues.’ • QAKFB 02069: ‘The sisters of Mji wa Wazee usually give us beans and maize.’ • DO BO283:’ The challenge of the church is that the church is not able to meet all the needs of these people.’ • DO BO283’It is to encourage them so that they don’t lose hope even if they are growing weak day by day, but that is life ’. 16
  17. 17. 3. Barriers to participation • QAKFB03047 ‘at times I am not able to afford food, where can I get money to be contributing to the group regularly? Most things if you want to participate you have to have money.’ • QAKFB01043 ‘There isn’t any group which supports women’. • QAKMA02053: ‘I fear getting involved in groups. I don’t really hate them as such, but my age does not allow me to do certain things. I may not be able to get their pace.’ • DO BO283:’there is very little you can do, because you cannot force an adult who has his own capacity of thinking to do what he doesn’t want to do!’ 17
  18. 18. 4. Evidence of Syncretism • DW BO285: ‘where there is scarcity in the country, for example, food scarcity and people are hungry, or there is some sort of scarcity in the country, people run to the other side when they hear there is something good there’. • DO BO283: ‘not on the side of old people, it is the youth who mix faiths, but you find that if an old person decides ’this is my faith and I want to follow this faith.’ he will follow it and stick to it and you cannot remove him from there.’ 18
  19. 19. Conceptual pathway: 19
  20. 20. Discussion & Implications • Key findings: HOPE Lack of understanding • Implications: Exclusion/Isolation. • Recommendations for training for faith based agencies working in this area. • Next steps: – Feedback & APHRC Briefing Paper – Further site visit 20
  21. 21. 21 How could faith-based agencies in the slums better meet the needs of older people?
  22. 22. 22 Acknowledgement
  23. 23. References • Amuyunzu-Nyamongo, M., and Ezeh, A. C. (2005) 'A Qualitative Assessment of Support Mechanisms in Informal Settlements of Nairobi, Kenya', Journal of Poverty, 9: 3, 89 — 107 • Atchley, R.C. (1997) ‘Everyday mysticism: spiritual development in later life’, Journal of Adult Development, vol 4 123-134 • Chepngeno, G and Ezeh (2007) ‘Between a rock and a Hard place: perception of Older people living in Nairobi City on return migration to rural areas.’ Global Ageing 4 p67-78 • Coleman P.G. (2005) ‘Spirituality and ageing: the health implications of religious belief and practice’ Age and Ageing 34: 318-319 • Kodzi, I ., Gyimah, S., Emina, J., and Ezeh, A.,(2010) ‘Religious involvement, social engagement and self assessed health status among elderly residents of informal neighbourhoods of Nairobi Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine doi:10.1007/s11524-010-9482-0 • Mudege, N.A, and Ezeh, A., (2007)‘Gender , aging, poverty and health: survival strategies of older men and women in Nairobi slums’ Journal of aging studies 23 245-257 • Sadler, E and Biggs S. (2006) ‘Exploring the links between spirituality and ‘successful ageing’, Journal of Social Work Practice Vol 20, 3 267-280 • UNHABITAT 2004, Urban poverty and slums, intra-city differential study of Nairobi, Global urban observatory section, 23

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