Appraisal of Community’s Sense of Social Support and Social Distancing Measures in Combating COVID-19 Pandemic in Residential Neighbourhoods of Akure, Nigeria
This study used the Sense of Community Index 2 (SCI-2) designed by McMillan & Chavis (1986). However, the SOC indices were slightly modified to account for issues relating to the current pandemic, which was not captured in the McMillian & Chavis study. This paper reports on the relationship between preventive measures to reduce the spread of the pandemic and residents' sense of community in poor neighbourhoods during the COVID-19 pandemic. Questionnaires were administered to household heads of selected poor residential neighbourhoods in Akure, Nigeria, and subjected to frequency distribution and the Pearson moment coefficient analysis to determine the relationship between social distancing and sense of community during the pandemic. The majority of the respondents (99.6%) were aware of the pandemic, and 92.3% adhered to one or more safety measures (personal hygiene, mask, curfew, isolation, and lockdown). The findings also revealed a significant (p=0.05) correlation between a sense of belonging and adherence to pandemic prevention measures in the study area. Therefore, it is essential that decision-makers take into account not only the socioeconomic characteristics of people but also the social concept of their daily existence when determining social policy and service delivery.
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