Connected in the street: the relation between online social networks, self-esteem and satisfaction with life among individuals experiencing homelessness

Calvo García, Fran
Carbonell Sánchez, Xavier
Turró Garriga, Oriol
Giralt Vázquez, Cristina
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The universalisation of Social Networking Sites has prompted a debate about whether contact with relatives and friends online has a positive effect on psychological well-being, as it has on direct relationships with primary groups. The aim of this study is to analyze the use of social network sites in a sample of 164 individuals experiencing homelessness (IEH), and to establish the relationship between this usage and their levels of self-esteem and satisfaction with life, using a multiple linear regression model for each dependent variable. The main results show a high prevalence of Internet and social network sites usage amongst IEH, even slightly higher than in the population overall. The variables predicting a higher degree of well-being are related to the use of social network sites, especially keeping in touch with friends. The chronicity associated with length of time on the street is also a key factor. A debate exists regarding the benefits of social network sites on health, and the importance which education may have in improving access to specialized services ​
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