A certain conscious representation of the surrounding world and own place in it is fundamental condition of human existence. The study of such representations, associated with these or other properties of the psyche and ways of people’s behavior, is necessary for the proper organization of the life of any society, though it is not in everyday practice, an independent and ad hoc task. Thus, it is necessary to think about the question: what informs people’s decision to study social work?
Observing a variety of journal articles about the social work we see that social work is a kind of professional activities, converging in helping individuals, groups and communities to enhance or restore their capacity for social functioning, as well as creating conditions conducive to the achievement of these goals in the society and for the public benefit. Stoesz (2002) stated that “like its sister occupations–nursing and education–social work blossomed as a semi-profession during the Progressive era. In the century following, social work would assume responsibility for three areas of social welfare: child welfare, public welfare, and mental health.”
Professional experience in social work consists of the application of professional values, principles, methods and skills for the following purposes:
- to assist people in receiving assistance;
- counseling and psychotherapeutic work: individual, group, family;
- to help groups or various communities in improving social services;
- and participation in the appropriate legislative process.
Thinking about example we can say that poverty is a big problem of our society that informs people’s decision to study social work. According to Krumer-Nevo, Weiss-Gal and Monnickendam (2009), it becomes obvious that “lecturers who wish to teach the topic of poverty, and particularly practice with people living in poverty, find that the existing literature does not offer a comprehensive discussion of the issue,” and society needs real professionals in this area. Finn and Jacobson (2003) added that the Just Practice Framework influences on professionals and forced them to be more attentive to modern challenges in social practice. And for good reason, Karger and Hernandez (2004) said that “social work was a magnet for progressive reformers and thinkers in diverse disciplines that were attracted to the profession because of a common cause.”
Thus, summarizing the above stated information it is possible to conclude that people’s decision to study social work depends on different factors, but the main factor is the great wish to be involved in social life and ability to help. Moreover, the specific variety of social issues at all levels requires social services to provide the necessary assistance to achieve social adaptation of individuals, groups, social strata. Hence, the role of social workers and various human services is designed to regulate the mechanism of human relations with the social environment because of their professional competence.
Finn, J. and Jacobson, M. (2003). Just Practice: Steps toward a New Social Work Paradigm. Journal of Social Work Education, Vol. 39.
Karger, H. J., Hernandez, M. T. (2004). The Decline of the Public Intellectual in Social Work. Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, Vol. 31.
Krumer-Nevo, M., Weiss-Gal, I. and Monnickendam, M. (2009). Poverty-Aware Social Work Practice: A Conceptual Framework for Social Work Education. Journal of Social Work Education, Vol. 45.
Stoesz, D. (2002). From Social Work to Human Services. Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, Vol. 29.