The Older Homeless Woman's Perspective Regarding Antecedents to Homelessness
AuthorHightower, Judy Sobeski
Committee ChairBerg, Judith
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractHomelessness is one of the most complex social issues today and has become a significant and growing problem. The homeless population is a heterogeneous group with women and families among the fastest growing segment. The paucity of research specifically focusing on older homeless women does little to answer the question regarding causes of homelessness in this population. The purpose of this qualitative descriptive study was to describe the older homeless woman's perspective of antecedents to homelessness and answer the research questions: 1) what was your life like before you became homeless and 2) what do you believe the cause of homelessness was for you? This study, guided by a feminist perspective, was conducted to explore and capture the complexities of the experience for older women. Data analysis, using qualitative content analysis techniques, identified three themes which described antecedents to homelessness. The themes were Personal Accountability, Difficult Life Circumstances and Lack of Support Networks. All themes were interrelated and offered a perspective regarding the steady progression into homelessness for older women. Themes Difficult Life Circumstances and Lack of Social Networks reflected previously documented findings, however, the theme Personal Accountability revealed antecedents not expressed before in the literature. This studies significance will be its contribution to the body of nursing knowledge through exploration and description of information regarding antecedents to homelessness and lays the groundwork for the design of appropriate interventions and future research.