Participation Rates and Perceptions of Caregiving Youth Providing Home Health Care

Raymen Rammy Assaf, Jennifer auf der Springe, Connie Siskowski, David Ludwig, M. Sunil Mathew, Julia Belkowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Little is known about the population of caregiving youth in the United States. We sought to describe the participation rates, demographics, and caregiving tasks among sixth graders served by the American Association of Caregiving Youth (AACY) in its Caregiving Youth Project (CYP) in Palm Beach County, FL and evaluate the perceived benefit of AACY services. Sixth grade enrollment data from eight middle schools between 2007 and 2013 were obtained from The School District of Palm Beach County and the AACY. Data were obtained using a retrospective review of AACY program participant files. These files contained responses to evaluative questions from both students and family members. Overall, 2.2 % of sixth graders enrolled and participated in the program. Among the 396 caregiving sixth graders studied, care recipients were predominantly a grandparent (40.6 %) or parent (30.5 %). Common activities included providing company for the care recipient (85.6 %), emotional support (74.5 %), and assistance with mobility (46.7 %). Youth reported a median of 2.5 h caregiving on weekdays and 4 h on weekend days, while families reported fewer hours (1.6 and 2.3, respectively). At the end of the school year, the sixth graders reported improvement in school (85.5 %), caregiving knowledge (88.5 %), and self-esteem (89.5 %). Slightly over 2 % of sixth graders participated in the CYP. While support services may mitigate the negative effects of the time spent by caregiving youth, more prospective research is needed to better define the true prevalence, tasks, and time spent caregiving among this subpopulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)326-333
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Community Health
Volume41
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016

Keywords

  • Caregiving youth
  • Family health
  • Unpaid health care delivery
  • Young caregiver
  • Young caregiving prevalence
  • Young carers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health(social science)

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