Challenges faced by parents in parenting children with learning disabilities in Opuwo, Namibia

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dc.contributor.advisor Hall, Herna en
dc.contributor.postgraduate Taderera, Clever en
dc.date.accessioned 2016-07-29T11:02:09Z
dc.date.available 2016-07-29T11:02:09Z
dc.date.created 2016-04-13 en
dc.date.issued 2016 en
dc.description Mini Dissertation (MSW)--University of Pretoria, 2016. en
dc.description.abstract When parents learn that their child has a learning disability, they begin a journey that takes them into a life that is often filled with strong emotions, difficult choices, interactions with many different professionals and services (VanPelt, 2007:53). In Africa, learning disabilities are considered a complex phenomenon seeing that there has not been an African derived definition of learning disabilities. Hitherto, tools and formulas used to diagnose learning disabilities are western based (Abosi, 2007:198). Due to elusive understanding of the phenomena among the general public, children who have learning disabilities are victims of derogatory and dehumanising terminology such as stupid , underachievers or slow learners . These terms affect not only the children with learning disabilities alone but their parents as well. Due to such attitudinal barriers as well as lack of understanding of the phenomena, parents of children with learning disabilities are often predisposed to eternal grieving over their circumstances. It is against this background that the study sought to explore the challenges faced by parents of children with learning disabilities in parenting such children. The social model of disability was utilised in order to gain insight into the way that society presents challenges to children with impairments. With themes such as participation, human rights, social change, the social model of disability promotes independency, positive self-image and stimulates potential in persons with disabilities (Ife, 2001:461). This model was found to be very appropriate as it also entails the core values of social work such as social justice, social change, human rights and respect for human dignity. The study was conducted using a qualitative research approach. The study was exploratory in nature and the type of research was applied. The phenomenological design was utilised. A total of eight participants took part in the study. A two-stage sampling process was employed to select participants for the study. These sampling methods were purposive sampling, as well as voluntary sampling. Data was collected from the caregivers by way of in-depth interviews. The outcome of the empirical study revealed that learning disabilities as phenomena were not clearly comprehended by the caregivers of children with learning disabilities. The lack of knowledge regarding learning disability as a concept amongst the participants had far reaching effects in terms of knowledge of programmes, services and policies that are meant to benefit children with learning disabilities and their parents. The research findings also confirmed previous research studies which found that the initial attempt to obtain information regarding a child s disability is a time consuming and difficult process as caregivers are bound to meet obstacles. Due to the inaccessibility of information regarding learning disability services, none of the participants in this study had a formal diagnosis conducted in terms of her child. It was concluded that knowledge regarding policies pertaining learning disabilities was very limited. Participants could not articulate specific policies that benefit children and parents of children with learning disabilities. This may indicate inadequate policy education on the part of policy makers and implementers. It was further determined that participants were not aware of the services of social workers as none of them had sought assistance for their children with learning disabilities from a social worker. The findings and the literature confirmed that families of children with disabilities are generally poor and suffer from financial hardships. Therefore it is recommended that practitioners such as social workers empower these caregivers by helping them to establish small enterprises which can generate income that will help them meet their needs. Female caregivers may be the most appropriate target group as research indicates that small enterprises have a higher likelihood of success if conducted by women. en
dc.description.availability Unrestricted en
dc.description.degree MSW en
dc.description.department Social Work and Criminology en
dc.description.librarian tm2016 en
dc.identifier.citation Taderera, C 2016, Challenges faced by parents in parenting children with learning disabilities in Opuwo, Namibia, MSW Mini Dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd <http://hdl.handle.net/2263/56112> en
dc.identifier.other A2016 en
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2263/56112
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher University of Pretoria en_ZA
dc.rights © 2016 University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.
dc.subject UCTD en
dc.title Challenges faced by parents in parenting children with learning disabilities in Opuwo, Namibia en
dc.type Mini Dissertation en


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