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“Life’s About Choices”: Exploring the everyday occupational choices of young adults with intellectual disability in a community context in South Africa

Background: It is well documented in the literature in the intellectual disability field that choice people with intellectual disabilities is limited. The human need to experience and inform everyday life choices, and the limited opportunities to do so, results in a contemporary health and human rights issue. Research Question: This study aims to explore what informs the everyday occupational choices made by young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in a community based setting in South Africa. Method: Qualitative interviews and a focus group were held with six young adults, who were recruited through a local non-profit training organisation. Results: Respondents identified (1) being different, (2) having limited choices, (3) accepting and staying small or (4) challenging and growing up, were the four core themes that arose from the interviews. Conclusion: It became evident that everyday occupational choices are co-constructed in context, where factors that were identified are consistent with those from the international literature which show that people with intellectual disabilities are widely stigmatised and prohibited from choice making, for several reasons, both intrapersonal and contextual. Implications: This study highlights the influence and importance of raising awareness and consciousness in society so that counter-hegemonic practices can promote occupational and social justice and change attitudes to ensure that people with disabilities have the choice to engage in balanced, meaningful occupations.
Date27 February 2020
CreatorsGoldberg, Cole
ContributorsKleintjes, Sharon, Adnams, Colleen
PublisherFaculty of Health Sciences, Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health
Source SetsSouth African National ETD Portal
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeMaster Thesis, Masters, MPhil

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