Is filial care for older adults in Nigeria threatened? Examining concerns from adult offspring providing care

Jacinta Ene, Prince Agwu (Lead / Corresponding author), Prince Ekoh, Uzoma Okoye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Filial care for older adults is a normative family practice in Nigeria, heralded by offspring. However, as families continuously evolve away from the extended structure to more nuclear setups, with women contesting traditional domestic roles, strong concerns about filial care are emerging. Our qualitative study investigated filial care using data elicited from 32 adult offspring in Enugu, Nigeria. Narratives reveal that filial care remains the most culturally acceptable and ‘feasible’ care option for older adults in Nigeria. Notwithstanding challenges constraining the efficiency of filial care, such as changing gender roles, an increase in the ages of adult offspring, uncooperative older adults, deplorable economic conditions, and living arrangements, filial care for older adults abound. Although contested, the paid care option within filial setup was reasonably considered by the participants as an important measure to address the challenges of filial care. In all, participants were unsure about the future of government assistance, hence there is a need to improve filial care by strategically adopting policy and programme directions, with social workers playing potentially pivotal roles.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101078
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Aging Studies
Early online date31 Oct 2022
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Adult offspring
  • Family caregiving
  • Filial care
  • Older adults
  • Social work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • General Arts and Humanities
  • General Social Sciences
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


Dive into the research topics of 'Is filial care for older adults in Nigeria threatened? Examining concerns from adult offspring providing care'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this