A place to call my own: Young people with complex disabilities living in long-term care
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It is important to consider the nature of home in more detail when thinking about living environments for vulnerable groups of people, especially as it has been found that the nature of home can impact on the quality of life. The aim of this study was to understand the “lived experience” of home for a group of young people with complex disabilities who had recently relocated to a specially designed residential apartment building. Multiple domains of home, as they were experienced over time, were examined through a series of semi-structured interviews conducted with seven residents at their apartments. The findings revealed two major themes (“perceived quality of the place” and “identity in place”) that were inextricably interlinked. To the extent that they overlapped, the experience of home was enhanced. The interaction between the two themes was associated with a dynamic ongoing process whereby the sense of home was either created or damaged (“deconstruction and reconstruction of home”). The current study has implications for how residential care workers are trained and supported if the well-being of individuals with complex disabilities is to be promoted within residential settings.
JOURNAL OF PREVENTION & INTERVENTION IN THE COMMUNITY
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