The influence of family support on experiences of ageing and HIV/AIDS in rural Malawi

Emily Freeman, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

In sub-Saharan Africa household and familial coping mechanisms are expected to be under increasing strain. The HIV/AIDS epidemic threatens to further increase demand on these systems while at the same time weakening their functioning. Older people’s experiences of ageing, and the HIV/AIDS epidemic, will depend on the resilience of these systems. This study explores the changing transfers of support to, from and between older people in rural Malawi and the implications of this support for older people’s health and wellbeing, and the development of national level policy and programming. The primary method of data collection will be a series of in depth open ended interviews with people aged over 49, complemented by key informant interviews, document and observational data. These data will be supplemented by secondary analysis of health and demographic survey data and local observer field journals collected by the Malawi Diffusion and Ideational Change Project.

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Presented in Poster Session 4: Health and ageing