March is Social Work Month!
Social Work Month in March is a time to celebrate the great profession of Social Work. This year, The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) celebrates the profession and emphasizes that “Social Work Breaks Barriers.” Social Workers wear many hats and are devoted to helping their community in many different ways. In celebration of Social Work Month, here are a few facts about what social workers do, what they value, and how they can be a great resource for you and your community.
What Do Social Workers Do?
The primary mission of a social worker is to enhance human well-being and help meet basic or complex needs of all people.
Social workers are found in every facet of community life, including schools, hospitals, mental health clinics, senior centers, elected office, private practices, prisons, military, corporations, and in numerous public and private agencies.
Some social workers help clients who face a disability or a life-threatening disease or a social problem, such as inadequate housing, unemployment, or substance use. Social workers also assist families that have serious domestic conflicts, sometimes involving child or spousal abuse.
Some social workers conduct research, advocate for improved services, engage in systems design, or are involved in planning or policy development. Many social workers specialize in serving a particular population or working in a specific setting.
Social Work Values
Social Workers also follow six core values provided by the NASW Code of Ethics that help guide them as practitioners when working with clients and their communities. These values are:
Service: Social Worker’s primary goal is to help people in need and to address social problems.
Social Justice: Social Workers challenge social injustice.
Dignity and Worth of a Person: Social Workers respect the inherent dignity and worth of a person.
Importance of Human Relationships: Social Workers recognize the importance of human relationships.
Integrity: Social Workers behave in a trustworthy manner.
Competence: Social workers practice within their areas of competence and develop and enhance their professional expertise.
These values are important to social workers because it’s what makes this helping profession so unique and is the foundation of their purpose and perspective.
How Can A Social Worker Help Me?
Many social workers specialize in serving a particular population or working in a specific setting.
When helping others, social workers focus on both the person and their environment. It’s important to social workers that they understand the external factors that may also be impacting a person’s situation or outlook.
Social workers create opportunities for assessment and intervention to help clients and communities cope effectively with what’s going on in their life and help make changes if necessary.
Social workers can help clients deal not only with how they feel about a situation, but also what they can do to change it.
Social workers help people of every age and background.
Social workers offer direct services and therapy or counseling directly to clients.
Social workers can help people overcome some of life’s most difficult challenges: poverty, discrimination, abuse, addiction, physical illness, divorce, loss, unemployment, educational problems, disability, and mental health conditions. They help prevent crises and counsel individuals, families, and communities to cope more effectively with the stresses of everyday life.
Why Celebrate Social Work Month
Social Work month is an opportunity to appreciate the hard work and dedication of social workers. Every day, social workers are helping their clients or communities by providing resources, offering empathetic support, targeted programs, helping client’s face life’s challenges, and so much more. Take the time this month to thank a social worker you know and share your appreciation!
To learn more about the Social Work profession visit: https://www.socialworkers.org/
Leslie Hamman, MSW,LSW
Social Worker, Chillicothe City School District
740.775.4250 Ext. 16172