Journal Article

The Experience of Loneliness among Live-In Filipino Homecare Workers in Israel: Implications for Social Workers

Liat Ayalon and Sharon Shiovitz-Ezra

in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 40, issue 8, pages 2538-2559
Published in print December 2010 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online April 2010 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcq050
The Experience of Loneliness among Live-In Filipino Homecare Workers in Israel: Implications for Social Workers

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This paper evaluates the experience of loneliness among Filipino homecare workers in Israel. It is expected that Filipino homecare workers in Israel experience a triple jeopardy that is responsible for their social and emotional loneliness: (i) as a result of their immigration to a different country and the need to adjust to different cultural values and norms while relinquishing existing social contacts in country of origin, (ii) as a result of their status as temporary workers who are not expected to build their lives in the host county, but to serve Israelis and then leave after several years, and (iii) as care-givers of the frailest individuals in our society. We conducted semi-structured interviews with Filipino homecare workers, their care recipients, family members of care recipients and social workers in charge of this care-giving arrangement. Our analysis revealed three major themes: (i) the experience of emotional and social loneliness, (ii) its impact on workers' emotional and physical health, and (iii) common coping mechanisms workers use to address their profound loneliness. We discuss a variety of ways social workers can employ in order to alleviate such feelings of profound loneliness among Filipino homecare workers.

Keywords: Globalisation; long-term care; mental health; professional care-giving

Journal Article.  9032 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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