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Health promotion with a single parents self-help group

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dc.contributor.advisor Edwards, S.D. Dhlomo, Rosemond Mbaliyezwe. 2012-04-10T09:30:50Z 2012-04-10T09:30:50Z 2000
dc.description A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts (Clinical Psychology) in the Department of Psychology University of Zululand, South Africa, 2000. en_US
dc.description.abstract Single parenting has become very common today due to having a child illegitimately, death of spouse, separation, and high rate of divorce. Single parent families are subject to many forms of economic and psychological stress. For example, they result in the creation of non-custodial parents, whose contact with their children is often irregular and unrewarding. The quality of interpersonal relationships with others makes the difference in coping or not coping during the first five years of being a single parent. An organization of single parents (self-help group) provides a support system responsive to the special problems of single parents, including discussion groups, which are responsive to the inadequacies in the ongoing lives of single parents, in promoting mental health. Self-help groups fall within the social action model of community psychology which aims to promote personal empowerment defined as the process of gaining influence over events and outcomes of importance to an individual or group. This model is a shift in intervention from prevention to empowerment and from needs to rights. The present research has been motivated by the World Health Organisation's 'target for all* document and the Ottawa Charter for action to achieve health for all by the year 2000 (presented at the first international conference on health promotion in November 1986). It has also been a motivation to note a commitment and emerging progress by health professionals and psychologists in mounting an array of health promotion and prevention programs. The aims of the study were to elicit needs from a group of single parents, form and evaluate an ongoing self-help group program and promote the following variables: psychological health, empowerment andparent effectiveness. It was hypothesized that the self-help group program for single parents will result in improvement of the mentioned variables. The researcher called for volunteers to join the group. Eight single parents committed themselves to be available for most sessions, seven of whom were females. The researcher made use of the following psychological techniques : biographical inventory, needs analysis questionnaire, global assessment of functioning scale, power maps, parenting skills rating scale, and program evaluation interview guide. In line with the social action model, this was a participatory action-research, program-evaluation type of design, where single parent co-researchers jointly defined the aims of their group, the themes to be discussed and the meanings of such variables as psychological health, empowerment and parent-effectiveness. The participants were pre- and post- tested on the above variables- The group ran for a contracted period of five weeks and the members met twice each week. The study realised its aims and the hypotheses were not rejected. The main strength of the research is that it encouraged community participation. The themes from sessions have been presented and analysed and it is evident that the study yielded positive results. It questioned the way the participants have been doing things and the reasons they did them. It led to them changing their attitudes toward their accustomed styles of parenting. This was interpreted as empowerment as they were gaining influence over events and outcomes of importance to them. The single parents self-help group empowered participants to be able to empower other single parents as the eight participants in the present research committed themselves to starting more groups of the same kind. In that way, they will be cascading the skills and knowledge they gained from the group. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship National Research Fund (NRF) en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject Single parents self-help en_US
dc.title Health promotion with a single parents self-help group en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US

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