The Role of a Social Worker Today
In the modern day, a social worker plays a diverse range of roles. These professionals are highly active in sectors like education, research, casework, health, policy development, community engagement and many more. At the heart of all social work is the preservation of human rights and social justice. In other words, a social worker today works to improve how the social fabric functions.
To implement their work, these social experts are categorized in various forms and this article seeks to unravel the individual roles therein.
Types of social work
All social workers are trained to have some fundamental skills that include empathy and flexibility. Other vital skills are active listening, speaking, writing, critical thinking, problem solving skills, coordination and case management; the list of attributes and skills is long. This type of work is delivered effectively when these social experts have the passion and natural ability to help people in society.
These experts can choose to specialize on a specific area of social work to be more effective. Because social work is holistic, some professionals will fit better in roles they are better qualified to tackle. There are three main types of social work as given below;
Public health social work
When a person is diagnosed with a chronic or life threatening disease, they will find it very hard to cope. A social worker will come in to help the patient and the family cope with this life altering situation.
From counseling to arranging for support groups and formulating case management interventions, their work is cut out. Public health social workers will mainly be found at health centers, care homes and even at hospitals. Their primary role is to give patients the necessary resources so that they can cope in the best way possible to enjoy a quality life.
Child, school or family social work
There are very many social challenges in families ranging from domestic abuse to poverty and compromised health. To this end, children in such situations may be affected leading to their decline in terms of education and overall wellness. Social workers will come in to help these families find solutions.
From arranging adoptions to locating foster homes and promoting academic performance in the children, social workers seek to better the lives of children and families at large. In school settings, the professionals will also advise on challenges posed by truancy, bad behavior and teenage pregnancy. The social workers collaborate with the school, authorities and parents to find answers to these challenges.
Mental health and addiction social work
Substance abuse and mental health are related and these are some of the top challenges that societies have to grapple with. Addicts will need the right help so that they can turn around their lives. Those who need mental health care services will also need to be connected to the right facilities. Social workers in this area will seek to provide these vital services to the patients or clients.
The professionals also tackle prevention education, case management and client advocacy. At the end of the day, social work seeks to restore dignity to vulnerable individuals so that they can reach their full potential in life.