- Social work first got its start in Buffalo (Go Bills!) through charity organizational societies. The main focus of these societies was to help individuals in the area and to eliminate poverty. Early volunteers called “friendly visitors” were trained and then later paid to help people out of poverty.
- According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), there are currently over 200,000 clinically trained social workers in the United States, making social workers the country’s largest mental health service providers. That’s a whooooole lotta people trying to change the world!
- So that means that social workers are EVERYWHERE! No for real… You can find social workers doing their thing and practicing in fields like of child welfare, forensics, the military, mental health, immigration, gerontology, public welfare, and the list goes on.
- In New York State, there are 3 levels of of social work licensure: Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW), Licensed Clinical Social worker (LCSW), and Licensed Clinical Social Worker with “R” number designation (LCSW-R). BUT WAIT!!
- You DO NOT necessarily have to be a licensed social worker to still work in areas of social work. You can serve as an advocate, provide “self-help” services to people, conduct research, and much more to still work in areas of social work. The options are endless!
- Now you may think that social workers are here on this Earth to help people, but in actuality, social workers are here to help people HELP THEMSELVES through empowering and guiding individuals on their quest to finding solutions to their specific situations. Now ain’t that just awesome?!
- Social workers are also some of the only professionals who actively and purposefully challenge the injustices of the world, making social justice a crucial part of being a social worker.
- Human relationships are kind of a big deal for social workers. From individual families to communities, social workers emphasize the importance of these relationships in all areas of the profession.
All information comes from “Week 1: What is Social Work” PowerPoint by John Vassello