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Life with Limited Privacy due to Housing Challenges: Impact on Children’s Psychological Functioning

C Gwandure


This study investigated the influence of limited living space and privacy on children’s psychological functioning. The study invited 240 participants, of which 120 children were in the experimental group and 120 in the comparison group. The participants in the experimental group were recruited from communities facing living space and personal privacy challenges, while the participants in the comparison group came from privileged communities with relatively adequate living space. The children’s psychological functioning dimensions measured were anxiety, depression, conduct disorder, addictive and risk behaviours, delay of gratification, sexual risk behaviours, and perceptions of social support. The results showed that the two groups differed significantly in levels of anxiety, depression, conduct disorder, and addictive and risk behaviours. The findings of the study indicate the need to offer psychological support to children facing living space and privacy challenges. Implications for further studies in the area of housing and psychological wellbeing are discussed.