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A Scoping Review: Social Participation as a Cornerstone of Successful Aging in Place among Rural Older Adults

1
Department of Sociology, Faculty of Arts and Science, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON K7L 3N6, Canada
2
Department of Family Medicine, School of Medicine, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON K7L 5N6, Canada
3
Centre for Disability Research and Policy, Faculty of Health Sciences, The University of Sydney, Lidcombe, NSW 2141, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Geriatrics 2018, 3(4), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/geriatrics3040075
Received: 30 August 2018 / Revised: 22 October 2018 / Accepted: 26 October 2018 / Published: 29 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Care and Successful Aging)
Despite obstacles, many rural-dwelling older adults report that positive aspects of rural residence, such as attachment to community, social participation, and familiarity, create a sense of belonging that far outweighs the negative. By being part of a community where they are known and they know people, rural elders continue to find meaning, the key to achieving successful aging in this last stage of life. This scoping review explored factors influencing social participation and, through it, successful aging among rural-dwelling older adults. We sought to answer the question: what factors enhance or detract from the ability of rural-dwelling older adults to engage in social participation in rural communities? The scoping review resulted in 19 articles that highlight the importance of supports to enable older people to spend time with others, including their pets, engage in volunteer and community activities, and help maintain their home and care for their pets. Overall, the lack of services, including local health care facilities, was less important than the attachment to place and social capital associated with aging in place. View Full-Text
Keywords: rural; older adults; human–animal bond; social participation; aging in place rural; older adults; human–animal bond; social participation; aging in place
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Carver, L.F.; Beamish, R.; Phillips, S.P.; Villeneuve, M. A Scoping Review: Social Participation as a Cornerstone of Successful Aging in Place among Rural Older Adults. Geriatrics 2018, 3, 75.

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