Doctor of Philosophy
MacDermid, Joy C.
This work investigates how single mothers maintain healthy behaviours for themselves and their children as they try to meet the evolving COVID-19 public recommendations. Everyone has had to adapt to changing public health rules. Single mothers may have unique challenges as they juggle to adapt to changing family responsibilities since they do not have another person helping in the home, and help outside the home may be restricted by public health rules. My research plan addressed these questions to learn more about the experiences of single mothers during the pandemic: 1) What are the changes in family responsibilities? 2) How do they implement health-promoting behaviours that have been recommended to prevent COVID-19 such as mask wearing, social distancing, hand washing, and disinfecting surfaces; and what things helped or prevented those changes? and 3) How do they maintain other healthy behaviours to address their overall health like: healthy eating, physical activity, and mental health. My research involved quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews to provide in-depth understanding. Single mothers may be at particular risk during the pandemic. This research will help us understand the challenges and needs of single mothers so that they can follow public health rules for COVID-19 and stay healthy, while supporting the health and well-being of their children.
Summary for Lay Audience
I studied how single mothers maintain their health and support their children’s health during a pandemic. Single mothers have unique challenges because they may not have another person helping in the home, and help outside the home may be restricted by public health rules. My research plan answered three questions about their experiences: 1) How did family responsibilities change? 2) How do they implement health rules to prevent COVID-19, like mask wearing, social distancing, hand washing, and disinfecting surfaces; and what things affected those changes? and 3) How do they maintain other healthy behaviours like: healthy eating, physical activity, and mental health? I used surveys and interviews to understand their experiences and needs, and then make recommendations. This issue is very meaningful to me because I grew up with a single mother in Ecuador and I saw her struggle to provide food, safety and a better life for her children.
Pino Gavidia, Lisbeth Alexandra, "How can Single Mothers Care for Themselves and their Children during the COVID-19 Pandemic?" (2022). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 8768.
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