March is Social Work Month; therefore, in honor of raising awareness of this often misunderstood profession and its mission, I want to state the Proclamation set forth by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). More information about the NASW and the field of social work can be found on their website: http://www.socialworkers.org/pressroom/swMonth/default.asp.
As a Master of Social Work (MSW) and Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), in my role as Associate Director of Admissions and Recruitment at the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) I have the good fortune to educate people about the field on many occasions, such as recruiting events, panel discussions, classroom presentations, and individual meetings with prospective students. I feel privileged to have the opportunity to be an advocate for the profession, a profession I vehemently believe has the power to create social change and impact the lives of individuals, families, groups, communities, and humanity. At SP2 there is an emphasis on social change in all five of our programs and many (if not all) of the proclamation statements below can be applied to each of them. Therefore, I urge you to take a moment to read further and request that you join me in proclaiming March as Social Work Month and sharing the message that “Social Work Matters” and offers hope.
Melissa Bottiglio, MSW, LCSW
“Social Work Matters
The Social Work profession has been instrumental in achieving civil rights and human rights advances in the United States and across the globe for more than a century.
The primary mission of Social Work is to enhance human well-being and help meet the basic needs of all people, especially the most vulnerable.
Programs and services provided by professional Social Workers are essential elements of the American social safety net;
Social Workers make a critical impact in adolescent and youth development; aging and family caregiving; child protection and family services; health care navigation; mental and behavioral health treatment; military and veterans assistance; nonprofit management and community development; and poverty reduction;
Social Workers function as specialists, consultants, private practitioners, educators, community leaders, policymakers and researchers;
Social Workers influence many different organizations and human service systems and are employed in workplaces ranging from private and public agencies, hospices and hospitals, schools and clinics, to businesses and corporations, military units, elected offices, think tanks and foundations;
Social Workers seek to improve social functioning and social conditions for people in emotional, psychological, economic, and/or physical need;
Social Workers are experts in care coordination, case management, and therapeutic treatment for biopsychosocial issues, and have roles in more than 50 different fields of practice;
Social Workers believe that a nation's strength depends on the ability of the majority of its citizens to lead productive and healthy lives;
Social Workers help people, who are often navigating major life challenges, find hope and new options for achieving their maximum potential;
Social Workers identify and address gaps in social systems that impede full participation by individuals or groups in society;
Therefore, in recognition that our nation would be less successful without the contributions of America's 640,000 social workers Penn School of Social Policy & Practice proclaims the month of March 2012 as Professional Social Work Month and calls upon all citizens to join with the National Association of Social Workers in celebration and support of the Social Work profession.”