The elderly in Uruguay: Volunteer work and civic service actors

Cruz, Anabel; Perez, Lucia
2007
Survey of elderly A telephone survey was also conducted using a stratified random sampling in Montevideo neighborhoods. The presence of elderly in different areas of the city was assessed, for which it was necessary to survey a sample of 250 cases. The sampling error was +/-6%, which means that the reliability of the survey reached 99%. The percentage of rejections reached 18%, which is considered a relatively small number. The survey form, made up of 36 questions, was designed with a view to
more » ... sessing the impact of volunteer work on this population, the characteristics of the work, and the availability and diversity of modalities and existing proposals in Montevideo. Surveys were distributed for three weeks, alternating between the morning and the afternoon in order to reach the broadest possible range of elderly at home. Preliminary Findings This section will deal with the main features found in the universe of subjects, in order to subsequently state some particular observations derived from the initial processing of the data collected in the field work Volunteers The survey found that, in Montevideo, 25% of the elderly carry out or have performed activities of a voluntary nature. This fact-a very high index which surpassed initial expectations-indicates the importance of this work. Although each volunteer has unique and differential features, the groups of volunteers shared common characteristics and features. Most of the elderly who take part in voluntarism report feelings of loneliness, and awareness of absences and gaps in their lives. At the same time, volunteers appear to be dynamic people with a thirst for participation, people who resist the passivity into which the society forces them with its stigma of non productivity. Another aspect emphasized as a characteristic feature of this population is the experience of the challenge of changing roles and adapting to a new situation, which is exacerbated by the process of readjustment and repositioning which the individual faces both in his private and social life. At first glance, this population prefers recreational activities to cultural ones. However, the inclusion of cultural promotion and strictly cultural activities suggests that these cultural activities are more popular, representing 15%, or the third most important.
doi:10.7936/k7xg9qn2 fatcat:wkrhrifbkvgs3b7a2r6bmeoms4