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Title: Volunteering in older age from a lifecourse perspective : situating older adults' volunteering in holistic and lifelong context
Author: Hogg, Edward
Awarding Body: Northumbria University
Current Institution: Northumbria University
Date of Award: 2013
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This thesis explores how the nature of engagement in formal volunteering by older adults is shaped by experiences across the lifecourse and into older age. It utilises the Total Social Organisation of Labour theoretical approach to situate volunteering within the wider work context, looking at how volunteering is undertaken alongside other work commitments - paid and unpaid - at different times across the lifecourse. This synthesis of TSOL and lifecourse approaches allows this research to take a holistic approach to understanding volunteering by older adults; rather than approached in isolation, the nature of volunteering in older age is considered in context. Analysis of this was undertaken through qualitative semi-structured interviews with 26 older volunteers who engage with voluntary and community organisations in England. This data was used to develop further a heuristic proposed by Davis Smith and Gay (2005), which presents three categories of older volunteer lifecourse; constant, serial and trigger volunteers. In doing so, the differences in lifecourse experiences between individuals in the three categories are explored, and differences examined. This allows for the impulses to engage in formal volunteering in older age to be explored in light of these differences, and this thesis looks at how internal and external impulses to engage in formal volunteering are shaped by previous life experiences. It concludes by arguing that, while all volunteers have unique pathways to engagement and unique reasons for engaging, in understanding the different categories of older volunteer we can better understand how previous life experiences affect the ways in which older adults engage in formal volunteering.
Supervisor: Hardill, Irene ; Daly, Siobhan ; Dwyer, Peter ; Bowpitt, Graham Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: L500 Social Work ; L900 Others in Social studies