Socio-demographic Correlates of Older Adults’ Living Arrangements in Botswana

Document Type



School of Nursing and Midwifery, East Africa


This study uses data from the 2011 Population and Housing Census (PHC) to examine the living arrangements of adults aged ≥ 65 years and to assess individual-level and household-level correlates of living alone for this age sector. Measures included age, sex, marital status, educational attainment, religion, employment status, occupation, economic activity, geographic locale, place of usual residence, housing and living conditions, disability status and relationship of respondent to household head. Overall, 12.6% of older persons lived alone. A higher percentage of this group resided in rural villages and settlements and they were more likely to be male, younger, and non-Christian, and to have attained tertiary education and be working. 6% of older adults who lived alone resided in very poor households and they fared worse economically than those in shared living arrangements. Their most common disabilities were vision (9.8%) and hearing (4.1%) impairments, with 22.2% of the former and 21.1% of the latter living alone. Policy and practice implications of study findings for Botswana’s aging population are discussed in the paper.


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Botswana Population and Housing Census