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Celebrate Social Work Month by honouring the vital role these professionals play in our society. If you’re considering a career in social work, now is your chance to learn more about this job. Register your CV for FREE and start looking for vacancies today!

Social work, Social workers, Job Mail, Service, Public service, Photo credit - Pavel Danilyuk.jpg Photo credit: Pavel Danilyuk

What is social work?

According to the Department of Social Development at the University of Cape Town, social work is: “a dynamic profession that promotes social change, problem-solving in human relationships, and the empowerment and liberation of people to enhance well-being”. Social workers help individuals, families, groups, and communities to enhance their overall well-being.

Social work is practised in various sectors of society, such as education, development, health, law, business and many more. Social workers can also work in private practices.

What does a social worker do?

Social workers are people who provide protection, support, and assistance to children, families, and other individuals who are vulnerable or in a crisis. This can include anything from abuse to serious illness, disability, unemployment, inadequate housing and more.

Social workers assist people through counselling, providing support and helping them to identify the issues, come up with different solutions, and finding the right resources. Social workers will also work closely with the family and friends of people in need, as well as the police, schools, and other authority departments.

Core values and principles

Social workers play a vital role in our communities and it’s essential that they uphold the core values of this profession. Important values include the following:

- Service

The primary goal of a social worker is to help others and address social issues. They need to prioritise the needs of others above their own interests and be committed to helping individuals and families to overcome challenges.

- Integrity

Social workers must be reliable and trustworthy at all times, as they are dealing with other people’s lives. They must also be aware of the mission, values, and ethical principles of the profession.

- Social justice

These professionals are committed to promoting social justice and combating injustices. They provide support for people who are facing oppression or people who are unable to advocate for themselves.

- Dignity and worth of the person

Each person is different and social workers need to be mindful of these differences. They need to treat each person with dignity and respect.

- Relationships

These professionals acknowledge the vital role relationships play in individual and community well-being. They help their clients to build healthy relationships and facilitate conflict resolution. Social workers need to be patient and have outstanding communication skills to build good professional relationships with their clients.

Social work, Social workers, Job Mail, Service, Public service, Photo credit - Ron Lach on Pexels 1.jpg Photo credit: Ron Lach on Pexels

The benefits of social work

  1. The biggest benefit is the emotional satisfaction of making a difference and making the world a better place.
  2. There are a variety of opportunities in the government and private sector.
  3. The diversity of social work makes every day different, so you’ll definitely never get bored.
  4. There is a demand for professionals in this field.

What are the daily challenges of social work?

As rewarding as social work can be, it does come with its challenges. The biggest one, of course, is the emotional challenge. You’ll deal with many different people and heartbreaking stories, but the reward of helping the people in need makes it all worth it. Other challenges may include language barriers, difficult people, violence and more.

What is Social Work Month?

Social Work Month draws attention to the vital contributions that these professionals make to our communities. This month acknowledges social workers’ commitment to tackling the difficult challenges that individuals and communities are facing.

Social Work Month was officially recognised in 1984 and each year has focused on a different theme. In the past, these themes have included HIV/AIDS, violence prevention, and the importance of social work. You can celebrate this month by showing your appreciation to social workers or by volunteering at a local charity. If you’re still deciding on your career, you can celebrate by learning more about this vital profession.

From Job Mail, we would like to express our appreciation for the work social workers do. We cannot even begin to comprehend the challenges they face on a daily basis, but we know they do everything in their power to help children and families and therefore they are the angels of society.

Interested in a career as a social worker? Find vacancies on Job Mail today.

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