Are you interested in being a future social worker? This short article written by our amazing intern Tika will help you to understand more about the social work profession.
Based on the definition from IFSW (International Federation of Social Work, 2014), “Social work is a practice-based profession and an academic discipline that promotes social change and development, social cohesion, the empowerment and liberation of people. Principles of social justice, human rights, collective responsibility and respect for diversity are central to social work. Underpinned by theories of social work, social sciences, humanities and indigenous knowledge, social work engages people and structures to address life challenges and enhance well-being.”
Furthermore, social work has ethical principles based on social work’s core values. These principles set forth ideals to which all social workers should aspire. NASW (Nasional Association of Social Work) described the value and ethics of social work:
Ethical Principle: Social workers’ primary goal is to help people in need and to address social problems
Value: Social Justice
Ethical Principle: Social workers challenge social injustice
Value: Dignity and Worth of the Person
Ethical Principle: Social workers respect the inherent dignity and worth of the person.
Value: Importance of Human Relationships
Ethical Principle: Social workers recognize the central importance of human relationships.
Ethical Principle: Social workers behave in a trustworthy manner.
Ethical Principle: Social workers practice within their areas of competence and develop and enhance their professional expertise.
Social work practice has three different scopes (Micro, Mezzo, and Macro).
Micro, these are social workers working with people one-on-one to help them create change in their individual lives. For example, Clinical social workers who provide counselling services (addictions, mental health, marriage and family, trauma, etc.).
Mezzo (or middle) level social workers tend to work with larger groups or institutions as opposed to individuals, or they may have a more administrative role overseeing a program or service delivery. For example, Social workers supervise a team of others who provide direct practice interventions.
Macro Social workers at the macro level are working to create high-level change. While they do not necessarily work with populations directly, the changes they are making in programs, policy, research, and other areas, trickle down to affect many. For example Policy makers and grant writers.