"Holding on to what I do": experience of older Slovenians moving into a care home

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


External organisations

  • Plymouth University


Purpose of the Study: This qualitative study explored Slovenian older people’s experiences of transition into a care home and the influence on their everyday engagement in meaningful occupations.

Design and Methods: A longitudinal, phenomenological approach was employed. Semistructured interviews with six Slovenian older adults were conducted at three time intervals: before the relocation, 1 month after, and 6 months after the relocation into a care home. Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used for the study design and analysis.

Results: One overarching theme from the research findings “Holding on to what I do” is presented in depth. Although the participants’ everyday occupations were challenged throughout the transition, they tried to maintain their most meaningful occupations that were an important part of their identity. Three superordinate themes underpinned this overarching theme: “This is who I am,” “Adjusting my daily occupations,” and “The value of health.”

Implications: The study indicated the need to develop programs and services for older adults transitioning from home into a care home environment. Focusing on enabling older people to maintain their engagement in meaningful occupations as an important part of their identity is imperative. This study brings a better understanding of older people’s experiences of transition into a care home from an occupational perspective. It has the potential to influence how elder care is planned and implemented in Slovenia and further afield.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)512–520
Number of pages9
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 17 Nov 2016


  • transition, meaningful occupation, identity