• Establishing 'Friends of Care Home' Groups

      Furness, Sheila M.; Torry, Bren (2009)
      This chapter presents key findings from a year long study where two `friends of care home¿ groups were established, monitored and evaluated. The authors are both qualified social workers and one has worked as an inspector of care homes whilst the other has worked as a nurse in both residential and nursing homes. Working as researchers we wanted to draw upon our experiences and understanding of care homes to develop and provide a practical contribution that could be used to raise standards in care homes. Although the notion of setting up `friends of care home¿ groups is not new, the lessons learnt from setting up such groups have not been shared through research.
    • New families? Tradition and change in partnering and relationships

      Duncan, Simon; Phillips, M. (2008)
      The family as a social institution is often said to be undergoing rapid change or even crisis. Commentary in the media and by policy-makers sometimes claims a `breakdown¿ of the family, asserting that intimate ties of loving and caring are becoming more individualised and self-centred, even selfish. Some scholars see this as part of a broader process whereby traditional social ties such as class, religion and family are fading away. Instead, they argue, people are `compelled to choose their own biographies¿ and personal relationships are being individually and actively chosen from a diverse range of possibilities. Statistically speaking, marriage is decreasing in popularity, whilst living alone, cohabitation and births outside marriage are increasing. But what do trends like this mean? Does this mean `family breakdown¿ or, as much in-depth family research has argued, just that the outward form of families is changing but the inner core - the value people attach to their family relationships ¿ remains central? This project tried to answer this question by examining the British public¿s attitude to different family relationships and parenting arrangements. It looked particularly at cohabitation and marriage, partnering, divorce, solo living, living apart together, same sex relationships and friends.