- January 2015
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
- Historically the family has been an important source of support and solidarity. However in the current Spanish economic context the crisis has strengthened the mechanisms of family solidarity. In particular the households headed by people 65 years and over are reducing the impact of the crisis. But older people are also receiving help. Demographic aging involves profound social changes that affect the structure and composition of families. The reduction in average household size, the increase in single person households and weakening family and personal networks, affect the welfare and quality of life of the older people. In Spain the family continues to be the main source of support and help in old age due to limited development of the welfare state. The aim of this paper is to reflect on the effect that changes in demographic processes and family dynamics will have on support that older people receive from their families in Spain and Europe. Knowledge of family and residential context of people over 65 years becomes essential when addressing efficient policies for integration from the perspective of age. The considerable increase of older people in developed countries, combined with changes in family-related behaviour and weakening family networks, have caused concerns about older people's family support in future.