Social Work and Disabilities- By Gilda Goldental-Stoecker

  1. The World Health Organization defines disabilities as any lack of ability or restriction to perform an activity in the range or manner considered normal for humans. (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 217)            200.gif
  2. A developmental disability is defined as a chronic and severe condition of a physical or mental impairment, is permanent, occurs before age 21, requires lifelong professional services from many disciplines, and results in major functional limitations in the major areas of life including learning, self-care, self-sufficiency economically, language, mobility, and capacity for independent living. (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 218)200-1.gif
  3. To help those with disabilities, social workers can use the Strengths Model. This model takes focus away from the shortcomings associated with the disability and focuses on identifying the client’s strengths and the strengths of their environment. The client would be motivated by their strengths and is then able to form a cooperative relationship with their social worker. (Dinitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 226)200-2.gif
  4. Because disability is no longer focused on just mental retardation, social workers are able to have greater a positive impact on both individuals with disabilities and the field itself since they can advocate for a greater range of services that more comprehensively assess and treat disabilities. (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, pg. 217) a.”It’s important to have a lot of tools, because if all you’ve got is a hammer, then all you’re gonna see is a nail” –Charlie Kramer200-3.gif

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