Commenced in January 2007
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Using the Transtheoretical Model to Investigate Stages of Change in Regular Volunteer Service among Seniors in Community

Authors: Pei-Ti Hsu, I-Ju Chen, Jeu-Jung Chen, Cheng-Fen Chang, Shiu-Yan Yang


Background: Taiwan now is an aging society. Research on the elderly should not be confined to caring for seniors, but should also be focused on ways to improve health and the quality of life. Senior citizens who participate in volunteer services could become less lonely, have new growth opportunities, and regain a sense of accomplishment. Thus, the question of how to get the elderly to participate in volunteer service is worth exploring. Objective: Apply the Transtheoretical Model to understand stages of change in regular volunteer service and voluntary service behaviour among the seniors. Methods: 1525 adults over the age of 65 from the Renai district of Keelung City were interviewed. The research tool was a self-constructed questionnaire, and individual interviews were conducted to collect data. Then the data was processed and analyzed using the IBM SPSS Statistics 20 (Windows version) statistical software program. Results: In the past six months, research subjects averaged 9.92 days of volunteer services. A majority of these elderly individuals had no intention to change their regular volunteer services. We discovered that during the maintenance stage, the self-efficacy for volunteer services was higher than during all other stages, but self-perceived barriers were less during the preparation stage and action stage. Self-perceived benefits were found to have an important predictive power for those with regular volunteer service behaviors in the previous stage, and self-efficacy was found to have an important predictive power for those with regular volunteer service behaviors in later stages. Conclusions/Implications for Practice: The research results support the conclusion that community nursing staff should group elders based on their regular volunteer services change stages and design appropriate behavioral change strategies.

Keywords: Seniors, stages of change in regular volunteer services, volunteer service behavior, self-efficacy, self-perceived benefits.

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