Determinants of resilience for people ageing in remote places: a case study in northern Australia

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Heather Gibb

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate how people managed to stay resilient as they aged in remote places. In Western developed countries, “successful ageing” is associated with older people’s right to age in their chosen place. To remain resilient, older people require support to supplement diminishing self-reliance associated with increasing frailty. Such support services do not extend to remote communities, making it difficult to age in place. This article reports on a case study of ageing in remote places, from the perspective of seniors within a small community in remote northern Australia. The study found how older people attempt through volunteer efforts, to supplement the gaps in aged support services. This collective effort to achieve ageing in place demonstrated greater integration with place and social resilience within the community. However, seniors’ social resilience was seen as tenuous, given collective self-reliance is based on volunteer efforts of older people.

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