Engaging Nursing Home Residents in Formal Volunteer Activities: a Focus on Strengths

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Nursing homes around the world are seeking new strategies to improve the quality of life for older adults living in their facilities. Involvement of older adults in formal volunteer opportunities is a strategy that can provide social interaction and meaningful experiences and has been associated with physical and emotional health benefits. Although engaging older adults in volunteering has shown promise as a method for improving quality of life, community volunteer opportunities have often been made available only to non-institutionalized older adults. This may be due to negative views of both nursing homes and their residents. In addition, nursing home residents are often isolated both physically and socially from their surrounding community. However, using the strengths perspective as a framework, human service professionals in the United States and around the world can help to address these barriers. Specifically, human service professionals can help reframe negative views of nursing homes, identify strengths of nursing homes and their residents, and create and implement a strengths-based agenda for extending formal volunteer opportunities into nursing homes.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Ageing International