n Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa - Information needs and information seeking patterns of indigenous women in the Anglican Diocese of Natal : the case of the Diocese of Natal Archives




Indigenous women constitute the greater percentage of the laity in the Anglican Diocese of Natal. Women are versatile, active and visibly participate in different spheres of the church such as the choir, women guilds, lay ministry and local church leadership. However, this active engagement is largely constrained by lack of information on a plethora of issues the women encounter on a daily basis. These issues include: their own spirituality, income generating activities, healthcare matters, illiteracy, early marriages, domestic violence, the HIV/Aids pandemic, rape, violent crime, poverty and ignorance. This study examined the information needs and information seeking behaviour of these women with reference to the Diocese of Natal Archives and other information sources within the Diocese. Questionnaires and oral interviews were used for data collection. The analysis reveals varying information needs, sources, channels and seeking behaviour. Barriers to information needs are identified and suggestions on how to tackle them are provided.


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