File(s) under permanent embargo

Parenting, family functioning and lifestyle in a new culture : the case of African migrants in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

journal contribution
posted on 01.05.2011, 00:00 authored by Andre Renzaho, J Green, David MellorDavid Mellor, Boyd SwinburnBoyd Swinburn
This study documented the parenting styles among African migrants now living in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, and assessed how intergenerational issues related to parenting in a new culture impact on family functioning and the modification of lifestyles. A total of 10 focus group discussions (five with parents and five with 13–17-year-old children; N = 85 participants) of 1.5–2 hours duration were conducted with Sudanese, Somali and Ethiopian migrant families. The analysis identified three discrete themes: (i) parenting-related issues; (ii) family functioning and family relations; and (iii) lifestyle changes and health. African migrant parents were restrictive in their parenting; controlled children's behaviours and social development through strict boundary-setting and close monitoring of interests, activities, and friends; and adopted a hierarchical approach to decision-making while discouraging autonomy among their offspring. Programmes seeking to improve the health and welfare of African migrants in their host countries need to accommodate the cultural and social dimensions that shape their lives. Such programmes may need to be so broad as to apply an acculturation lens to planning, and to assist young people, parents and families in addressing intergenerational issues related to raising children and growing up in a different social and cultural milieu.

History

Journal

Child and family social work

Volume

16

Issue

2

Pagination

228 - 240

Publisher

Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd

Location

Oxford, England

ISSN

1356-7500

eISSN

1365-2206

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal; C Journal article

Copyright notice

2010, Blackwell Publishing