Crafting communities: promoting inclusion, empowerment, and learning between older women

Macfarlane, Selma and Maidment, Jane 2011, Crafting communities: promoting inclusion, empowerment, and learning between older women, Australian social work, vol. 64, no. 3, pp. 283-298, doi: 10.1080/0312407X.2010.520087.

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Title Crafting communities: promoting inclusion, empowerment, and learning between older women
Author(s) Macfarlane, Selma
Maidment, Jane
Journal name Australian social work
Volume number 64
Issue number 3
Start page 283
End page 298
Total pages 16
Publisher Routledge Taylor & Francis Group
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 2011-09
ISSN 0312-407X
Keyword(s) social work
capacity building
community development
social capital
Summary While social policy and planning documents are replete with ominous warnings about the cost of an ageing population, this article tells a different story about the productive and self-sustaining networks that exist among older women in the community who do craftwork. From our research conducted in Victoria, Australia during 2007–2008 we discovered a resilient and committed group of older women quietly and steadily contributing to community fundraising, building social networks, and providing learning opportunities to each other in diverse ways. Through our conversations with nine craftswomen we have been able to articulate clear links between the theory and models commonly espoused in the community development literature and the life-enriching practices used in organising informal community craft group activities. From our interviews with the older women we provide evidence of sustained participation, the generation of social capital, and the fostering of life-long learning. While none of the women we spoke to were trained in community development and did not use language commonly associated with feminist ideology, the relationship between the informal group work with principles of empowerment and self-efficacy were unmistakeable. We conclude with a discussion of the implications of our findings for critical social work practice.
Notes This paper was also presented at the : ANZASW 2009 : Many voices, many communities, social justice for all : Proceedings of the Asia Pacific Social Work 2009 Conference
Language eng
DOI 10.1080/0312407X.2010.520087
Field of Research 160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services
169901 Gender Specific Studies
Socio Economic Objective 920507 Women's Health
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2011, Taylor & Francis
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Created: Tue, 03 Sep 2013, 14:32:52 EST by Selma Macfarlane

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