The giving and receiving of support and care is intensely personal and intimate. At the same time, support and care is formed by context and history. Its ethical, political and philosophical dimensions are highly contested.
In Australia, there is a growing demand for attention to support and care, for example in relation to future provision for older people, the contribution of unpaid carers, and the implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
Parallel developments are seen in many other countries. Support and care is rapidly emerging as an urgent research and education challenge for the coming decades.
The Social Support and Care Research Program brings together researchers and educators within RMIT’s Centre for Applied Social Research. Its objective is to create new understandings and practices that benefit citizens and communities in situations of vulnerability and precarity.
The key aims of the Social Support and Care Research Program are to
The program engages with the complexities that give shape to the lives of people in situations of vulnerability. Inter-disciplinary perspectives and principles of inclusive research are central. Members of the research program are drawn from across RMIT University. The research proceeds through strong collaboration with community service organisations and consumer groups.
The research interests of the program span support and care in relation to older people, people with disabilities, mental health, children, youth and families, unpaid carers, and Indigenous communities. It attends to multiple identities and interdependency in our social relations. Integrated models of policy, planning and service delivery are of special concern.
Particular areas of research focus include:
The main activities of the program include