ERIC Number: ED269714
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Social Supports among the Homeless.
The homeless have long been considered a disaffiliated and socially isolated group. Research has indicated that most of the homeless are single and have no family relationships or friends to provide support. A study was conducted to gather information on both objective and subjective measures of social support from 125 individuals residing at a temporary shelter in a large midwestern city. Objective measures included marital status, church attendance, the number of good friends and the frequency of contact with them, and the presence of relatives and the frequency of contact with them. Subjective measures of social support were made to assess how the respondents felt about the quantity and quality of support received. While the results are generally supportive of the contention that the homeless lack social supports, they also suggest that many respondents had significant resources available to them for social support. In particular, participants were able to identify family members as providers of social support. Shelter users can be assumed to be willing to accept certain types of social support, simply by virtue of the fact that they are accepting shelter services. The homeless who remain on the street may be more likely to rely on alternatives which do not involve social interactions. Future research should examine social support among this more difficult street population. (NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Public Health Association (113th, Washington, DC, November 17-21, 1985). For related documents, see CG 019 099-100.