Qualities of the environment that support a sense of home and belonging in nursing homes for older people
Ageing & Society
The aim of this study was to contribute with knowledge about how a sense of home and belonging is enacted and can be supported in everyday life, with a particular focus on the relationships that connect everyday life and the environment in nursing home contexts. The concepts 'a sense of home' and 'belonging' were chosen with the ambition to grasp values grounded in experiences and everyday practices, with an openness for various aspects that can support an enjoyable life and comfort for nursing
... comfort for nursing home residents. The study focused on communal areas, e.g. dining room, kitchen, corridors and gardens, that serve as arenas where nursing home residents' everyday lives expand beyond the private room. Ethnographic methods were applied to identify and explore situations where a sense of home and belonging were enacted in nursing homes that had been acknowledged as good examples of nursing home environments. Through the analytic process, four qualities were identified: (a) a cornerstone for stability and everydayness, (b) the beating heart, (c) spatial dynamics, and (d) magnetic places. Following from the chosen methodology, the findings provide a situated understanding of how communal areas in nursing homes can invite a sense of home and belonging for the residents.