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This paper may be of particular interest to:  Practicing and Applied Anthropologists     Teachers of Anthropology in Community Colleges     Students
Type: Paper
Paper Title: THE RITUAL BASIS OF SUSTAINABILITY: MOTIVATING THE "UNTAPPED VOLUNTEER SPIRIT" IN HIV/AIDS TREATMENT PROGRAMS IN URBAN ETHIOPIA
Author: KENNETH MAES (Brown University)   
Date/Time: Wed., 12:30 PM
Co-Author(s): KENNETH MAES (Brown University) 
Abstract: Understanding ritual elucidates the mechanisms by which community-based HIV/AIDS treatment programs in sub-Saharan Africa attempt to promote shared assumptions about the need for and benefits of volunteerism. The ritual reinforcement of pro-social values among volunteers occurs in situations ranging from appreciation and initiation ceremonies to every-day interactions between supervisors, patients, and volunteers. Rituals, even if they are not maximally successful in promoting pro-social motivations, must be understood in order to address the sustainability of development and population health-related programs in contexts of economic insecurity. This paper examines how rituals function – with variable success – to sustain the motivations of volunteer caregivers serving an HIV/AIDS treatment program in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and thus the role that rituals play in sustaining such programs in this as well as other contexts. This examination paves the way for developing mixed quantitative and qualitative tools for the measure of individual and social level variables involved in rituals, such as longitudinal social network analysis, cultural consensus analysis, and multilevel modeling. Such an effort would allow for a rigorous ritual analysis that focuses on testing competing hypotheses about the relationships between ritual inputs and motivational and emotional outcomes at the individual and interpersonal levels. With a focus on the mis-match between the motivations of volunteers experiencing chronic economic insecurity and the expectations of organizations that seek to rely on volunteers, ritual analyses have the potential to integrate critical and applied approaches to the practice of community health and development.

Program Number: 1-0020
Session Title: VOLUNTEERISM IN CRISIS: RIGHTS, RITUAL AND REASON
Session Sponsor: National Association for the Practice of Anthropology
Session Date/Time: Wed., 12:00 PM-1:45 PM
Organizer(s): KENNETH MAES (Brown University) 
Chair(s): ALEXANDER RODLACH (Creighton University)  
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