Elderly caregiving in Ghana: An exploration of family caregivers' perceptions
Providing caregiving to elderly family members is very important across all cultures. A qualitative methodology using a phenomenological approach was used to guide the research in order to capture the perceptions of elderly caregivers in Ghana. The norm of reciprocity in social exchange theory was used as a framework to explore and understand caregivers perceptions of their roles as caregivers of their elderly family members and of their Pentecostal churches support for elderly caregiving. The researcher interviewed 20 Pentecostal church members who were family caregivers of their elderly relatives in Ghana. Semi-structured interviews were audio-taped, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed to determine themes. Three major themes emerged from the data: (1) reciprocity of personal obligations to provide caregiving to elderly family members, (2) reciprocity of financial support from the church for elderly caregiving, (3) reciprocity of services from the churches for elderly caregiving. The results of this study were compared to existing literature on elderly caregiving in Sub-Saharan Africa and conclusions were drawn. Limitations, implications, and recommendations for future research were discussed.