Who participates? Socioeconomic Factors Associated with Women's Participation in Voluntary Groups

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					Who participates? Socioeconomic
Factors Associated with Women’s
Participation in Voluntary Groups
Katy Osborne, Anna Ziersch and Fran Baum




  Abstract
  Participation in voluntary groups is potentially an important way to create
  health promoting social capital. This paper investigates women’s participation
  in voluntary groups, utilising data from a postal survey of 968 female
  respondents and in-depth interviews with 30 women. Logistic regression was
  conducted to examine factors associated with frequency of women’s group
  involvement. Not working full time, living in a married relationship, and
  having a university education were all significantly associated with regular
  involvement. The qualitative data further illustrated
				
DOCUMENT INFO
Description: Participation in voluntary groups is potentially an important way to create health promoting social capital. This paper investigates women's participation in voluntary groups, utilising data from a postal survey of 968 female respondents and in-depth interviews with 30 women. Logistic regression was conducted to examine factors associated with frequency of women's group involvement. Not working full time, living in a married relationship, and having a university education were all significantly associated with regular involvement. The qualitative data further illustrated some of the ways in which these three factors were linked with women's involvement in groups. We conclude that women who were able to regularly participate were those who already enjoyed levels of social and economic privilege. Policies to promote social capital via participation might focus on identifying what types of group involvement benefit women's health, and increasing the accessibility of such groups to include diverse groups of women. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]
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