The need for Social Work has increased dramatically in recent times as communities around the world have been torn by conflict. Whilst no single cause can be pinned on such events, there is evidence that suggests social work helps to build a sense of community in areas where people have traditionally been at odds with each other. Providing a service which promotes healing and hope, such professional development can prove invaluable to those who have suffered personal loss, lost their homes, endured racial and ethnic discrimination or are simply fed up with the indifference of others. As a Profession, social work takes on many different roles and forms which enable it to assist individuals, families and groups. Below are five examples of how social work influences society.
What Does Social Work Do?
* Providing a platform for social action: Social work involves an interest in issues that affect an individual, such as helping to tackle child poverty. By putting pressure on local governments to solve these problems and to tackle the root causes of the problems, social workers help to improve the lives of countless children. Many of these programmes result in the creation of safer environments for children. By providing educational resources, for example, they attempt to ensure that children learn more and have greater access to higher education. This may seem relatively insignificant on one hand, but when coupled with the other issues surrounding child poverty, the impact of social work is often profound.
* Creating a space for social interaction: Social work allows people from all walks of life to come together in order to improve the lives of those around them. This includes religious groups, social clubs, charity organisations and community based organizations. The work involved is diverse and often very personal, often incorporating a relationship perspective towards those who are most in need. By working with and involving the entire community, social workers help to create a safe environment in which local children can flourish. This provides a sense of community and security for those who feel forgotten by the wider society.
* Building self-worth and self-empowerment: One of the aspects of social work that has a profound impact on the lives of the individuals it works with is that of building individual self-worth and self-empowerment. Many of the issues affecting an individual stem from the family environment or past experiences. These can make an individual feel unfulfilled and unloved. They may also lack sufficient personal space or ability to pursue an education, resulting in low self esteem and isolation. Through social work professionals, such as psychologists, therapists and teachers, a positive social environment is created, giving the individual the opportunity to participate fully in a meaningful way and build up their confidence and self esteem. This helps them to achieve goals and meet needs that may previously have been beyond their reach.
Other Attributes Of Social Work
* Reinforcing values and attitudes: The promotion of social work and the need for its role in society has made it important for professionals to promote positive attitudes and behaviour. Providing a support structure for an individual can be difficult, however, as this can sometimes alienate them from the wider community. In order to combat this issue, professional organisations often offer courses or educational opportunities to help develop a positive social work skills set. These courses may incorporate team-work and leadership techniques that help build individual’s confidence and productivity, as well as providing additional job security.
To sum up, there are many benefits of professionally training to become a social worker. Not only does it improve the quality of one’s life but also increases opportunities for employment and career progression. Furthermore, social work is not just an option, it’s now a valued and integral part of the Australian lifestyle.