In partnership with Michigan State Extension’s Greening Institute, Dr. Barbara Ames and a team of graduate students are evaluating the social and economic needs of un-or underemployed mature workers. In the present study, workers 30 years of age and older, currently involved in the process of foreclosure were interviewed. The goal of the project was to give voice to the struggles of these individuals and their families, and to pilot a post-foreclosure curriculum.
This study is part of a larger project investigating the multiple facets of long-term un-or underemployment, home foreclosure, and the age-specific needs of mature adults. Throughout this suite of studies, the research team, including graduate students Erica Tobe, Amanda Guinot Talbot, and Camaya Wallace Bechard, interviewed participants and key community workers throughout the state of Michigan. In total, the team has interviewed 37 un-or underemployed mature workers.
Presently, the main focus of this study is to evaluate and provide feedback on a post-foreclosure curriculum created by Extension educators trained in foreclosure counseling. The curriculum contains six units covering topics that span from (a) understanding wants, needs, values, and family strengths; (b) examining and understanding financial records; and (c) knowing available housing options.
Preliminary results reveal that mature workers are dealing with a variety of mental, emotional, and physical issues surrounding the loss of their home. Fear and anxiety for the future of their home and financial lives, feeling angry toward mortgage companies, and family stress were all prominent emotions expressed. Participants voiced that one of their greatest educational needs is information on moving forward post-foreclosure. This includes, acquiring tools for building a new and healthy financial future, plans to adjust or create a new family budget, and ways to restore damaged credit.
A full study report will be forthcoming. For more information on this or other related projects please contact Camaya Wallace Bechard (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Amanda Guinot Talbot (email@example.com)
The following related studies are currently in the process of publication.
- Mature Workers Experiencing Under or Unemployment: Implications for Policy
- "My home…What else do you want me to give up?": A Phenomenological Approach to The Experience of Un-or Underemployment & Home Foreclosure for Mature Adults