Sociology and Anthropology Vol. 6(8), pp. 633 - 643
DOI: 10.13189/sa.2018.060801
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Ameliorating Adversity: Supporting Resilience in Low-income Lone Mothers

Lea Caragata 1,*, Sara J. Cumming 2, Elizabeth C. Watters 1
1 Faculty of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
2 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Sheridan College, Oakville, Ontario, Canada


Many lone mothers experience significant hardship in their lives, yet some appear resilient in the face of adversity. Understandings of lone mothers' resilience are necessary to develop effective policies and programs; however, research in this area is lacking, including understanding factors that both create hardship, and protect against it. Grounded in a feminist, participatory methodology this study addresses these gaps by engaging 38 Canadian lone mothers' in interviews and focus groups to explore their understandings and experience of resilience. Lone mothers identify a breadth of risk and protective factors organized here into a social exclusion framework so that their compounding and intersecting nature may be more readily identified. The findings shed light on important risk and protective factors in the lives of low income lone mothers and such improved understanding perhaps contests the negative and too readily made judgments about these families.

Resiliency, Risk and Protective Factors, Poverty, Lone Mothers, Social Exclusion

Cite this paper
Lea Caragata , Sara J. Cumming , Elizabeth C. Watters . "Ameliorating Adversity: Supporting Resilience in Low-income Lone Mothers." Sociology and Anthropology 6.8 (2018) 633 - 643. doi: 10.13189/sa.2018.060801.