Exploring the views of elderly women on the psychosocial effects of heading a household in old age. Snakepark, Soweto.

Mohlomi, Lerato Nolethando
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Elderly women who are heads of households in South Africa are beset by different hardships including offering emotional, physical and financial support to the younger generations. There are various factors that has led the elderly women to become heads of households including the death of their partners. Unemployment has also contributed to elderly women becoming heads of households. Although there are young adults that live with the elderly women and they are within the working age, majority of the young adults are without employment and this has led to the elderly women taking responsibility for the family. The study aimed to explore the views of elderly women on the effects of heading a household in old age. Eleven participants were recruited from Tirisano Community Based Care Centre that is in Snakepark, Soweto. The study employed a qualitative research approach and further utilized semi-structured interviews as a method of data collection. Thematic analysis was employed to analyze the data collected for the study. Key words: elderly women, heads of households, psychosocial effects, social support systems