Life around here: community, work and family life in three Australian communities

30 Nov 2011

This study provides information about the factors that influence the participation of families in paid employment and their communities more broadly.

In-depth interviews were undertaken with 59 households (involving 71 individuals) across Broadmeadows in Victoria, Mansfield Park in South Australia, and Carole Park near Goodna in Queensland. These suburbs - along with Angle Park in South Australia and Goodna in Queensland - have been selected to be the test sites for the Family Centred Employment Project, as according to a number of indicators, such as high levels of family joblessness, they have been identified as being socially and economically disadvantaged.

The study was designed to cover a broad cross-section of people living in each of the areas, rather than a statistically representative sample, in order to gauge the range of issues facing families and to capture change where this was occurring. The participants in the study came from a variety of backgrounds and were at different stages of the life course. The study participants included families with children, retirees, working and non-working parents, and families from a variety of cultural backgrounds. These participants provided diverse accounts of their lives within Broadmeadows, Mansfield Park and Carole Park. However, many of their experiences were shared both across and between the study sites.

Of the 59 households participating in the Life Around Here study, 36 did not have an adult employed at the time of the interview. Of this group, 20 were families with working-age adults and children aged under 18 years, 8 were households with adults of working age and no children under 18 years, and 8 were households consisting of retirees.

Authored by Kelly Hand, Matthew Gray, Daryl Higgins, Shaun Lohoar and Julie Deblaquiere

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