Presentation on theme: "Module 3: Understanding Social Work"— Presentation transcript:
1Module 3: Understanding Social Work Training Kit : Personalised Social Support 2012Module 3: Understanding Social WorkApproximate duration: 1 hourReferences for this module:Audrey Relandeau & al., ‘’Personalised Social Support: Thoughts, Methods and Tools in an Approach of Proximity Social Services’’, Handicap International, 77 p.IFSW – International Federation of Social Workers website, available at:IASSW - International Association of Schools of Social Work website, available at:Shirin Kiani and Annie Lafrenière (Technical Resources Division)Handicap International
2Overview What is social work? Goals and values of social work History of social workSocial work in developing countriesGeneralities of social workSocial work interventionsCONTENT: This module gives a broad introduction to the social work profession, its values and goals, its history, how it is implemented in developing countries. We will also discuss generalities to know about the social work profession and key social work interventions.
3What is social work? INTERACTION: The trainer asks participants to BRAINSTORM around the definition of social work and the purpose of the profession in a society.Some Key words that people might come out with : change, assistance/help, people, family, communities, relationships, social justice, equal in society, protection, resources, charity….CONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p.9)According to the international federation of social workers (IFSW):“The social work profession promotes social change, problem solving in human relationships and the empowerment and liberation of people to enhance well-being. Utilising theories of human behaviour and social systems, social work intervenes at the points where people interact with their environments. Principles of human rights and social justice are fundamental to social work.”(Social work is dynamic and evolving, and no one definition is the permanent one) IFSW website
4Goals of Social Work INTERACTION: The trainer asks participants to list as many goals (what the profession aims to achieve through its work) and values of social work as they can (write on blackboard)Participants might come with these words : get needy people services they need (charity), ….Answers are provided in the next slides.
5Goals Increase people’s self-reliance Mobilize individual, families, organizations and communities to improve people’s life satisfaction, empowerment, quality of life.Overcome inequalities and injustice through inclusion of all (especially marginalized, vulnerable, excluded, at risk)Introduce social change (laws, social policies)CONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p. 8)
6Main goal? Do you agree with this statement? No matter what you do, the primary goal of social work is to increase the empowerment (self-power) of a person or group of people.INTERACTION:The trainer ask the participants if they agree with that statement. If they do not agree, what do they think is the main goal of social work ?If you agree you recognize that empowerment is the main goal of social work because it is able to produce all other results and is the prerequisite to most successful outcomes. If there is not personal empowerment, any work done with the person will not be sustainable.
7ValuesWhat are your values? (what important beliefs guide your actions/work)What do you think are the values of social work?INTERACTION:The trainer can ask participants what their values are and what they think the values of social work are. Each profession has a set of values that guides the way it works, but before it is interesting to see about personal human values, important beliefs persons have about how they should perform their work. (participants may speak about honesty, integrity, responsibility, etc.) A lot of personal values may be similar from personal to social work. Personal values are up to us to maintain, but professional values are a duty to maintain if you want to be a part of a certain profession, it is not something that is ‘nice to do’… but something that you believe you must do in order to work in the right manner to represent your profession/work.
8Values of social work Every person has value All people should be treated equallyHuman rights and social justice are importantSocial work aims for human developmentEach person can take an active role in their lifeDiversity has valueThere is potential in all communitiesSolidarity is importantCONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p. 8)Values of social work include:Every person has value: means that no matter who you are, what you can do, what your personal characteristics are (age, gender, class, race, religion), you have a human value… that value can be appreciated by other people and hopefully they are able to see it in everyone.All people should be treated equally: means that regardless of personal characteristics (age, gender, class, race, religion) everyone deserves a basic level of respect and treatment.Human rights and social justice are very important to humanity’s advancement and cohesion… there is a saying that civilizations are judged on how they treat their most vulnerable people.Social work aims for human development… not just to get basic right met… but hopefully to help maximize humans’ ability to be fulfilled and contribute to society.Each person can take an active role in their life… when given the chance to do so and supported.Diversity has value… and is not an enemy. In many societies, the diversity of cultures has much to offer in terms of food, language, traditions, music, clothing… these are basic things… but diversity of opinions and ways of thinking can make a society better as it challenges itself to betterment.There is potential in all communities… and there are different ways to measure this potential… at the very least, many communities have social structures and social capital to contribute to each other and the greater society.Solidarity is important… despite the differences and diversity, what will advance societies and maximize on what everyone has to offer is the solidarity amongst people to work together.INTERACTION:Trainer can ask participants what they think about each value presented above and if they have any other values to add… or some that they disagree with, etc.
9History of Social Work CONTENT: Social work started after the industrial revolution (in the west- where class system started to form) to help deal with the effects of poverty on some classes of society. Evolved over time to deal more with social problems than individual problems. Social problems were more common due to class differences.
10History of social workInternational federation of Social work (IFSW) created in 1950IFSW response to international issues needing to be considered1950-today, increase in number of conflicts and famine around the worldThroughout the years 3 models of social work have come to beCONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p. 10)The international federation of social work (IFSW) helps unite all social workers globally and develop good practices for different contexts and exchange experiences. It was created In 1950 with 7 country members and today is made up of 84 countries with 480,000 global social worker members. There has been a growing need for social work as global issues increase due to famine and conflict (world war I and II, genocide, etc.). Over time and in all the different countries, 3 models of social work are used. They are explained in the next slides.
11Over the last 30 years, 3 major changes in western countries Poverty related to social exclusion and employment => focus of social work shifted more towards employmentGovernments not the only reference point => many grassroots organizations are now present.From centralized and traditional social work (focus on individuals) => to decentralized and new types of social work (focus on public domain).CONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p. 10)Traditional types of social work has been more sector based and individual focused: mental health, child protection, family interventions, interventions in aid of older people. There is an important focus added today on employment, with social protection mechanisms.Indeed new types of specialized social work that came to be due to decentralization are: inclusion, local development and social economy. In addition, social work has moved from a governmnent-run profession to being owned by more grassroots organizations. From centralized to decentralized.
123 models of social workGovernment is the only one qualified and responsible to address social needs of all.Government should only reach most needy. The rest of the social needs should be addressed by the private sector.The government should be less involved. Communities need to strengthen and address social needs, to build mutual-aid networks.CONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p. 10)These models speak about the different approaches of different countries based on values and resources. For developing countries the 3rd model has become the more common situation, as the government has less resources to allocate to social work and social services, communities themselves are finding ways to meet the most urgent social needs.
13List 2 dis/advantages for each model: Social work responsibilityAdvantagesDisadvantagesGovernmentPrivate sectorCommunityCentralizedINTERACTION:Based on the 3 models presented in the previous slide, the trainer can ask participants to list advantages and disadvantages for each of the model.Answers:Government - advantages: establish standards and common practices across different regions, can have national policies developed.Government - disadvantages: Can be inefficient and bureaucratic, can have lack of resources that do not distribute equally where there is corruption. government makes decisions on what community needs when they may not know and community may have better idea of this.Private sector - advantages: have resources to address needs, can be lower cost and better run than government.Private sector - disadvantages: profit-making so may not address most urgent needs but those that make profit instead (whoever can pay), address individual needs but not usually social needs.Community - advantages: more in tune with needs than any other level, have social control to address true needs (not only profit making ones for elite), likely wanting to proceed for social benefit and not for profit.Community - disadvantages: resources may be limited, coordination with other activities in the country may be absent, standards/guidelines that could come from government may not exist when communities take ownership.Decentralized
14Social work in developing countries Social policies may be under developed or non-existentManagement of resources centralized at national levelNumbers of social workers low with often a higher density of populationPoverty and chronic crisis may make the nature of social work more protection, basic needs related, until other issues can be tackled.CONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p. 11)
15Nevertheless…International NGOs getting more involved in local developmentSocial work tied into many different types of development programsSocial work is important to MDGsIn developing countries, there is room for innovation/experimentation, the institutional constraints are not present like in developed countries.CONTENT:International NGOs and institutions are getting more involved in local development, which increases the presence of social work within development programmes. Social work is important to the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs), which are 8 international development goals to be achieved by 2015, and include such things as eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, or again promoting gender equality and empowerment of women.Institutional constraints that would limit practice in developed countries are standards and protocols that guide everyone’ work but that limit new practice as everyone approaches social work in a similar way. There may be different and new ways to do social work that have not been discovered due to these constraints.
16Social work in your country Does social work existas a profession?If yes:When did it start?Why did it start?Has it changed?If no:What informally exists to solve social problems?Who support the social needs of most vulnerable?INTERACTION:Trainer asks participants to discuss these questions in pairs for 5 minutes and then to report back to the larger class in open discussion.It is important for the trainer to find out these answers before the training.
17Generalities of social work Present in many contexts4 levels of impactSystemic approachTwo-track approachperson and environmentCONTENT: The next slides will present generalities of social work, i.e. its presence in many contexts, its 4 levels of impact, the systemic approach, and finally the two-track approach (person/environment)
18Many contextsSocial work happens in crisis and emergencies, as well as for everyday personal and social problemsHow is social work in a conflict or emergency different than working on an everyday social problem?INTERACTION:The trainer can ask participants how they see social work in a conflict or emergency situation being different than in an everyday situation.Some answers may be:-immediate protection and basic human rights in emergency situations-quick identification and referral of people to appropriate services.-child and family reunion-coordination of resources-psychosocial supportIt is also interesting to reflect that many of the participants may have spoken about crisis that affect a whole community (e.g. an earthquake, a civil war, etc.) It is important however to remember that a crisis can affect only 1 person (e.g. being abused), and interventions in social work with that person will change.
19Levels of impactSocial work can have near or far-reaching effects depending on the intervention used, there are 4 levels of impact:personfamilycommunitysocietyCONTENT: Social work can be seen as having 4 levels of impact : the person, the family, the community, and the society.
20Systemic approach …Believes that humans are a product of their environment.To understand a person, we need to understand their environment.The environment is made up of many different types of ‘systems’.Each person belong to different systems according to their own needs/characteristics.(System: a set of things working together as part of a connected network)CONTENT: (see PSS guidebook, p )Each person in a system is impacted by the system and also is able to impact the system themselves. Something that is seen as a problem is not a malfunctioning of the system, but a natural part of the system. Example of a system: Group dynamics, values and roles, for the people a particular territory or area.
21There are 5 types of systems 1st layer: Personal - age, gender, abilities2nd layer: Immediate - family, school, work, friends,3rd layer: Community-region - NGOs, ministries, funding sources4th layer: Society - larger values, beliefs, politics, values, national laws of area (country, region)5th: Interaction of all systems (system itself)CONTENT:Each person is linked with all these 5 systems, though may have some stronger links with some systems and not others.
22Using a systemic approach… His/her place in societyIn his/her different spheres of lifeThe places to which s/he belongsSocio cultural and religiousHis/her workand companyThe personPersonalityCultureHistoryIdentityValuesInterestsOrganisations to which s/he belongs:Sporting, humanitarian, otherCONTENT : (see guidebook page 19)A person evolves in different dimensions – physical, psychological, social and spiritual. These dimensions match up with the different aspects of their existence (body, thoughts, values and beliefs), relationships with others and the world (family, close circle) and existential motivation (the place and role they have, or want to have in this world).In social work, building up a relationship and communicating with others, taking part in social support, implies taking into consideration all aspects of the other person in order to get to know them and to understand them better. The context in which a person exists takes into account the values of the society they live in and those of the group they belong to.The systemic approach enables us to better identify and understand the role and function of each person at an individual level and, by extension, at a group and community level. It also helps us to make a global analysis of a person’s situation, and facilitate the interaction with their environment.His/her accommodationAnd neighbourhoodHis/her schooland where s/he received training
23Question to understand the system Purpose of a group/system: Why does it exist? What benefit do members have from belonging?Power division: Who is allied with who? who controls what in the system?Distances: Who is close to who? Who distanced/isolated?Leaders: Who does the group rely/depend on?Roles: Who contributes? Who manages finances? Who sets limits? Who authorizes ideas? Who suffers?Positions: How children are seen? How adults seen?Rules: Common rules?Values: Cultural and religious values?Beliefs: Family and community beliefs?CONTENT: This slides presents potential questions that facilitate a better understanding of another person’s systems.
24Systemic approach… in your work Understand role and function of person within the larger group they live in.Observing a system and how the person fits into it… helps you choose an appropriate personal project, that fits into their role/values/beliefs.CONTENT: A systemic understanding impacts the work of social facilitators, as it relates to how a person is understood within their environment and all the systems that make up that environment. The better all the layers impacting the person are understood, the better the social facilitator can work with them to interact successfully with all those layers.
25Social work interventions There are different ways to impact the person and the environment.What ways have you used before?CONTENT : Next session will do an overview of social work interventions that are used, some will be introduced in more details in the next modules.INTERACTION :The trainer invites participants to think of ways they used before that seemed interesting to them, in link with the different levels of interventions.
26Social work interventions Personal level: PSS - personal support on a particular project (focus of this training kit), counseling, psychosocial support, guidance, (…)Family level: using sociograms, teaching self-advocacy, protection - child/family reunion, (family mediation – family counseling, conflict mitigation, …)Community level: community organization and engaging in social and political action, coordinating systems, access to basic needs -facilitating meetings, mapping services, networking & forging linksSociety level: Social policy, planning, developmentCONTENT:Priorities of social work will vary from country to country and from time to time depending on cultural, historical, and socio-economic conditions. It is important to remember that interventions can impact 4 different levels and the focus should never be on only one level but to make sure all levels can be touched as needed, sometimes you need to touch the family and community level before the individual can benefit. So as a reminder, these interventions can fit into one or multiple levels of impact: individual, family, community, society.INTERACTION :The trainer can ask participants which level are they already intervening in within their work (or passed experiences) ? What are the interventions that they mostly do – including those that haven’t been mentioned already ?
27Link to practice* Give participants 5 minutes to answer these questions individually on a piece of paper, and then do a roundtable with each person sharing some of their answers.How do you (or could you) use the systemic approach in your work ?Which level of intervention, new to you, will you focus on in the coming months and how ?INTERACTION:The trainer leaves participants 5 minutes to answer these questions, and then facilitate a roundtable discussion with each person sharing some of their answers.The trainer can put extra attention on needs for further training / support.