SUBJECTIVE PERCEPTION OF THE SOCIAL SUPPORT BY THE SOCIALLY EXCLUDED ROMA PEOPLE

Alena Kajanová, David Urban
University of South Bohemia, Faculty of Health and Social Studies, České Budějovice, Czech Republic

Korespondenční autor: Alena Kajanová (Ali.Kajanova@email.cz)

ISSN 1804-7181 (On-line)

Full verze:
Full version

Submitted:24. 9. 2010
Accepted: 5. 4. 2011
Published online: 15. 6. 2011

Summary

Taking into consideration that a Roma family is still extensive and cohesive in comparison with a majority family according to David (2004), there is an assumption that it offers a fairly strong social support. In regard to the social support of the socially excluded Roma people, first of all, it concerns fulfilment in its economic factor.

The objective of our article is to define what the selected Roma respondents read, from the subjective point of view, as factors of the social support, what is the proportion of its anticipated and instrumental forms and, last but not least, if there is any balance between the social support being provided and received.

The chosen methodologies were the qualitative socio-ethnographic field research, semi-structured interview technique and participant observations. The research was implemented in two extensive Roma families (N=21) in two socially excluded locations in the South Bohemian Region. The interviews reflected the concept described by Křivohlavý (2001) who divides the social support into the micro, mezzo and macro levels; the elicited data is subsequently described in the article according to this concept.

The micro level proved to be the most significant factor of the social support for the described group, not only in the emotional respect. It also represented the most significant source of funds. However, under some circumstances, it seemed negative too. The mezzo level was perceived, first of all, in the anticipated form; therefore, friends or the community rather represented a potential than the real source of the social support. The macro level was not reflected as a source of the support by the respondents.

The outcome of our article is the finding that the social support may mean, to the socially excluded Roma people, one of the factors necessary for the literal “survival” of an individual in the conditions of a socially excluded location.

Keywords: Roma communities; a socially excluded location; social support; subjective perception

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