social work values for all staff

Why is this subject important?

On a social work degree course, a great deal of time may be spent discussing, analysing and writing about the value base of the profession.  Non-qualified staff members, who are almost always well-motivated and resourceful people and want the best for their service users, may not have had this luxury. They may find that their work is beset by deadlines, shrinking resources and expanding caseloads, and that it becomes harder and harder to be led by their values.

How will this course help me?

At the end of the course we want you to feel clearer about your own values, and how these may either help with, or get in the way of, your work.  We want you also to be clearer about the values of social work, and why these are sometimes less easy to follow.

What will I learn?   You will learn how to:
  • discover what your own values are;
  • avoid the pitfall of burn-out by being too value-driven;
  • understand the history of social work values;
  • get familiar with authority-specific values; and
  • make your work even more value-driven

“Few professions, if any, emphasize their values and ethics to the same degree as social work.”
- Derek Chechak -  'Social work as a value-based profession', Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics, 2015

“Since the profession’s inception, social workers’ attention was focused primarily on cultivating a set of values upon which the mission of social work could be based….  Over time, the profession has nurtured and refined a set of values that has given meaning and purpose to generations of social workers’ careers” - Frederic G Reamer, Social work values and ethics, 2006


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