Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Social Work Roles

Social Work Roles
As a social worker there are is an expected behavior that every social worker should adhere to. These behaviors are known as Social Work Roles. The role of a social work is contingent upon the client, client population, and the goals or mission of the particular agency. The worker may use one or more of the following roles when working with a client to help provide adequate service.

In this role, social workers fight for the rights of others and work to obtain needed resources by convincing others of the legitimate needs and rights of members of society. Social workers are particularly concerned for those who are vulnerable or are unable to speak up for themselves. Advocacy can occur on the local, county, state or national level. Some social workers are involved in international human rights and advocacy for those in need.
Case Manager
Case managers are involved in locating services and assisting their clients to access those services. Case management is especially important for complex situations and for those who are homeless or elderly, have chronic physical or mental health issues, are disabled, victims of domestic or other violent crimes, or are vulnerable children.
Social Workers, because of their expertise in a wide variety of applications, are well suited to work as managers and supervisors in almost any setting. As managers, they are better able to influence policy change and/or development, and to advocate, on a larger scale, for all underprivileged people.
The social worker is involved in the process of making referrals to link a family or person to needed resources. Social work professionals do not simply provide information. They also follow up to be sure the needed resources are attained. This requires knowing resources, eligibility requirements, fees and the location of services.
Social Workers are involved in many levels of community organization and action including economic development, union organization, and research and policy specialists.
Social Workers are often involved in teaching people about resources and how to develop particular skills such as budgeting, the caring discipline of children, effective communication, the meaning of a medical diagnosis, and the prevention of violence.
In this role, social workers are involved in gathering groups of people together for a variety of purposes including community development, self advocacy, political organization, and policy change. Social workers are involved as group therapists and task group leaders.
In the enabler role, a social worker helps a client become capable of coping with situations or transitional stress. A social worker conveys hope, reducing resistance and ambivalence, recognizing and managing feelings, identifying and supporting personal strengths and social assets, breaking down problems into parts that can be solved more readily, and maintaining a focus on goals and the means of achieving them
The mediator role involves resolving arguments or conflicts micro, mezzo, or macro systems. At the macro level, the mediator helps various subsystems within a community, or a community and some other system, work out their differences. At the micro and mezzo levels, mediation is helps in such areas as resolving divorce and child custody cases. A mediator remains neutral and does not side with either party in the dispute.
A negotiator represents an organization, a group, or an individual that is trying to gain something from another group or system. Somewhat like mediation, negotiation involves finding a middle ground that all sides can lived with and achieving consensus whenever possible. However, unlike mediators, who play a neutral role, negotiators clearly ally themselves with one of the sides involved.

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