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SOCW 6520 Assignment: Week 5 Blog
Post a blog post that includes 300 to 500 words my field experience is going to be at Sound options in Tacoma Washington 
Consider the topics covered in this week’s resources and incorporate them into your blog.
Post a blog post that includes:

An explanation      of organizational policy in your field education experience

My field placement is at sound options in Tacoma Washington they provided me with Counseling Policies and procedures pdf which I uploaded with other resources. provided
Birkenmaier, J., & Berg-Weger, M. (2018). The practicum companion for social work: Integrating class and fieldwork (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.
Chapter 8, “Social Work Practice in the Field: Working with Organizations, Communities, and Policy” (pp. 186-206)
Birkenmaier, J., & Berg-Weger, M. (2018). The practicum companion for social work: Integrating class and fieldwork (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.
Chapter 8, “Social Work Practice in the Field: Working with Organizations, Communities, and Policy” (pp. 186-206)
Working with Organizations, Communities, and Policy
Although many social work practitioners focus on direct practice with individuals, families, and groups, the social work profession is also heavily involved in macro practice, or organizational, commu-nity, and policy practice (Netting, 2013). This system level has the goal of benefiting large groups of clients or general society. Macro practice presents opportunities for practitioners to make large-scale positive changes in the lives of many clients through systemic solutions. Students who are interested in macro practice may feel passionate about working on social justice issues at larger scales—changing laws, communities and neighborhoods, or organizations’ policies or procedures to best serve clients. Even students inter-ested primarily in micro-level social work may appreciate macro-level work as well—making change that affects a group or larger numbers of people and possibly preventing social problems before they start. Given the growing complexity of client problems, becoming immersed in the practice issues that present themselves on the indi-vidual, family, and group levels is understandable. However, atten-tion to the broader organizational, community, and policy issues that frame individual problems is important. The issues that indi-vidual clients present to social workers are often rooted in problems that affect large numbers of people in their communities. Some of these problems can be addressed, at least in part, at the individual, family, and group levels within social service agencies and neigh-borhoods (but others are best addressed at the macro level). The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredits social work programs and requires programs to include content that prepares students to “advance human rights and social and economic justice,” and “engage in policy practice” (2015, pp. 7–8). Further, the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics (2008) requires social workers to embrace the value of social justice and to be socially and political active. By this point in your coursework, you may have the opportunity in the practicum to apply your macro knowledge and skills. Macro practice is a broad concept that covers a wide range of social work activities. Those social workers involved at the organizational level shape the way that human ser-vice policies are implemented as well as inform and influence the policy formation process (Patti, 2013). The skills needed for administrative social work practice include the following (Netting, 2013; Netting, Kettner, McMurtry, & Thomas, 2012; Patti, 2013): • Budgeting and financial management • Relationship building with boards • Organizational design, development, assessment, and diagnosis • Computer information systems and other technology • Human resource management (selection, training/staff development, supervision, and compensation) • Management (including use of affirmative action principles) • Marketing management techniques • Networking and partnership building with collaborators • Financial resource development • Media relations • Policy practice (externally as well as within the agency) • Fund-raising (through grant writing and other techniques) Community practice social workers are engaged in development, organizing, plan-ning, and action for progressive social change. Community practice skills include the following (Weil, Reisch, & Ohmer, 2013): • Program development, implementation, and evaluation • Fund-raising (through grant writing and other techniques) • Coalition formulation and maintenance • Planned change techniques • Macro-level advocacy • Community analysis • Interorganizational planning • Leadership development and citizen participation • Small-group decision-making techniques • Community organizing • Task force membership • Membership development and retention • Social and economic development techniques • Computer information systems and other technology • Use of technology (social media, Geographic Information Systems, databases, etc.) Finally, social policy practitioners analyze policy alternatives using data and research, select a preferred policy, and advocate for the preferred policy; they are also involved in policy implementation (Iatridis, 2013). Policy practice skills include the following (Iatridis, 2013): • Legislative development (advocacy and lo bbying skills) • Policy analysis and management • Issue analysis techniques • Social policy research • Legal analysis (including judicial and regulatory skills) • Mobilization of citizens, organizations, coalitions, and communities (through writing letters to the editor, opposite editorials (op-eds) Although these skills are grouped under discrete headings here for illustrative pur-poses, the three areas of macro practice share a symbiotic relationship in practice; practi-tioners in one area often need skills in other areas. For example, administrators of social service agencies are often involved in social policy development; community planners, organizers, and developers often work with boards and engage in lobbying; and policy practitioners may engage in leadership development and citizen participation. This chapter will address the breadth of topics contained in macro practice, includ-ing student involvement in administrative activities; community planning, development, and organizing; and policy practice. Rather than reviewing macro content that is covered in your practice courses, this chapter will build on your knowledge of administrative, community, and policy practice to help you apply ethics to macro practice and clarify expectations for your learning. This chapter will also discuss the business and process of practice with organizations, communities, and policy. Rosa has approached her field instructor several times with questions about how she can implement her social work program’s requirement to engage in some form of macro prac-tice. Her field instructor has deferred discussion of any specifics for vague reasons but during the last supervision session admitted that she did not want Rosa to do any sort of advocacy because it might “take away from her commitment to her clients” and/or “rock the boat.” Rosa knows that she must gain macro experience and would like to engage in political work regard-ing immigrants’ rights. What should she do? Is this an ethical dilemma? ETHICS IN PRACTICE WITH ORGANIZATIONS, COMMUNITIES, AND POLICY Critical Thinking Question What are the ethical dilemmas that arise at the macro level that you can foresee at your practicum site? How might you resolve an ethical dilemma that pits the best inter-est of an individual client against the best interests of an organization or community? Rosa is interested in political social work, which may include engaging in legislative advo-cacy, working on political campaigns or for elected officials, and possibly running for office someday. This work involves both micro skills (listening and negotiation skills) and macro skills (advocacy, policy analysis, and brokering skills). She has been told that social workers need to be more involved in decisions that affect clients and thinks that her back-ground could shape policy in ways to better serve immigrants. She feels that she could best carry out the social work ethical value of “challenge social injustices” (NASW, 2008) through this sort of work. She understands that the typical career path involves doing volunteer work, helping others get elected or working for an elected official, and then perhaps getting appointed or elected to a position someday (Myers & Granstaff, 2013). She would like to start on that path now, while she’s in practicum. Rosa is experiencing the tension between her concern about the welfare of her individ-ual clients and the societal and environmental structures that shape her clients’ lives. While she wants to offer her clients as much assistance as possible, she is right to recognize the mandate of the social work profession to “promote the general welfare of society” (NASW, 2008) and to struggle with the need to also focus on the larger issues in clients’ lives. According to the NASW Code of Ethics (2008), social workers have many ethical obligations that apply to work at the organization, community, and policy levels. These include ethical responsibilities in the practice settings, to the social work profession, and to the broader society. You might experience or observe situations in which social work ethical responsibilities must be carried out despite their difficulty. For example, you might experience a situation in which the policies or procedures of your practicum agency do not allow staff to work toward the client’s best interest. You might also observe a situ-ation in which effort taken to organize one part of a community could result in harm to another part of the community, as when, for example, drug activity moves from one neighborhood to another. You are encouraged to become familiar with the sections of the Code of Ethics that relate to macro social work and to keep a copy of the Code available throughout your practicum so that you can begin to recognize challenges in any of these areas and discuss them in supervision with your field instructor (Reamer, 2012).
EXPECTATIONS FOR STUDENT LEARNING IN PRACTICE WITH ORGANIZATIONS, COMMUNITIES, AND POLICY
Generalist practice requires a wide range of skills for helping individuals, groups, families, organizations, and communities. Therefore, building on practice skills with individuals, families, and groups, social work practitioners must have both a clear understanding of the community and agency contexts for service delivery and the ability to intervene in order to deliver effective services. Unless you are in a practicum setting that focuses primarily on macro practice (i.e., is involved solely in administrative work, community organizing, community development, or policy practice), you will likely assume fewer macro-practice responsibilities as compared to responsibilities at other practice levels. Even if you consider yourself to be primarily a direct practitioner, you may find it necessary to engage in certain macro-level activities in order to meet your clients’ needs effectively. Such activities may include the following: 1. Giving a fund-raising speech about your agency to a local church 2. Testifying before a local mental health funding board 3. Organizing an interagency group to develop needed services for homebound seniors 4. Working with a neighborhood group to rid the area of abandoned apartment buildings 5. Organizing a group of public housing tenants with the goal of persuading the local housing authority to hire tenants to provide maintenance to the buildings 6. Conducting policy research to learn about policy position papers and current research in preparation for policy advocacy 7. Using the Internet to track legislation and se ending emails to local or state-level legislators or the White House regarding legislation 8. Signing an e-petition and forwarding it to others for their action 9. Presenting a budget to the board of directors of an agency for approval 10. Lobbying a legislator in person to support a piece of social legislation
Use of Micro Skills in Community Practice
Micro-practice skills are utilized in a variety of ways in macro practice. Below are examples of the use of micro skills in community practice (Hardina, 2012). Assess Observe community residents—Observe the appearance and verbal and nonverbal behavior of community residents. Observe the community—Observe the geographic size, the number and demographics of residents, the physical condition of buildings, and the quality of city services provided. Use interviewing skills to learn about community residents—Conduct one-on-one interviews to develop relation-ships, learn about motivation and values, and recruit participants. Intervene Develop relationships with media contacts. Collaborate with community partners to recruit. Use dialogue, storytelling, and structured group-work techniques to identify community problems. Facilitate participant discovery, assessment, and documen-tation of community strengths and problems. Facilitate leadership development and group decision making. Engage participants in the development of community action plans. Use group-work techniques for group maintenance and cohesion. Evaluate Use group-work techniques to reflect on group process and assess achievements.
Social work practitioners working in wide-ranging contexts must be prepared to use the various client system levels to address client needs. Practice skills with individuals, families, and groups provide a solid foundation for and must be utilized in macro practice (Hardina, 2014). For example, Box 8.1 provides an example of the micro skills utilized in community practice. Just as you must know how to work with people as individuals to work effectively with them as a group, you must possess the ability to work with individuals, families, and groups to work with people as members of organizations, communities, and policy-making entities. In your interaction with individuals, groups of clients, agency adminis-trators, community residents, other community agencies, and politicians, you may use such direct skills as effective verbal and nonverbal behaviors, warmth, empathy, genu-ineness, and other communication skills (such as rephrasing, reflective responding, and clarification) (Kirst-Ashman & Hull, 2015). Furthermore, the mezzo skills of networking, effectively functioning as a team member or leader, planning and conducting meetings, and facilitating group conflict resolution are frequently utilized by macro practitioners (Kirst-Ashman & Hull, 2015). The skills distinctive to macro practice that are needed by social work students in practicum vary widely depending on the assignment and the agency context. Indirect skills you may wish to consider learning in the field include community planning, com-munity organizing, use of social action techniques, community needs assessment, policy analysis, coalition building, program development, lobbying, grant writing, fund-raising, public relations, staff and board of directors development and training, supervision, orga-nizational policy development, and strategic planning (Weil et al., 2013).
The following sections will discuss (1) the “business” of macro practice—administra-tive and task-related issues; and (2) the “process” of macro practice—commonly encoun-tered issues related to student implementation of macro assignments. Additionally, the impact of recent social policy changes on social work practice and the student role in practicum will be examined.
ORGANIZATIONS, COMMUNITIES, AND POLICY
Although many social work practitioners engage in community and organizational prac-tice, recent research shows that most social work practitioners define their primary prac-tice as direct practice (Weisman & Whitaker, 2013). Therefore, unless you are among the small percentage of students specializing in community organization, community devel-opment, social strategies, social justice, or political social work, your field instructor is probably a direct practitioner or an administrator. Direct practitioners are often involved, at least minimally, in some administrative-level responsibilities or may be involved in macro-level activities outside of work time. In many cases, students must be proactive if they wish to incorporate macro-level learning activities into the practicum experience.
Receiving a Macro Assignment
Cameron Seeks Administrative Experience Thus far, Cameron is very pleased with his practicum experience in the substance abuse treat-ment center. However, he realizes that he would, at some point, like to assume some admin-istrative duties in a social service agency. He was discouraged from pursuing this further at the interview with his field instructor, when he was told that the agency director has never worked with a student and is very “cautious” about delegating administrative responsibilities. He feels stymied and frustrated. What might he do to pursue this interest further? Cameron is discovering institutional barriers that prevent him from becoming involved in social work within larger systems. Like Cameron, you will likely need to engage in negotiation and dialogue with your field instructor about your interests in and needs for macro practice, the types of skills you wish to develop at this point in your curriculum, and realistic possibilities for involvement in the agency. Even if your agency is eager to allow you to assume macro-practice responsibilities, planning and forethought are impor-tant to ensure that you have a meaningful and positive experience. Beyond your prefer-ence for an assignment and that of your field instructor, consider the following strategies for gaining macro-level experiences:
Work at the macro level in communities, in organizations, and with policy can have profound effects on the operation and the reputation of the agency. Therefore, permission from an administrator may be needed prior to launching Practice Application 8.1
Gathering Information f your agency-based field instructor engages primar-ily in micro-and mezzo-level service delivery, interview him or her about his or her involvement with macro-level activities. Among other questions, ask the following: With what administrative activities are you involved? With what macro-level (policy) advocacy efforts are you involved? Does the agency encourage or support these efforts? What involvement in macro practice (organization, community, I and policy work advocacy) would you prefer? Do you find involvement in macro practice rewarding? Do you see these types of activities as falling within your professional role within the agency? Or within your professional role outside the agency? Journal on your discussion, and compare and contrast the roles of your agency-based field instructor with those of the field instructors of other students in practicum in your integrative practice field seminar. into a macro assignment. The extent of your experience in macro practice may play a part in the assignment of activities. If you are inexperienced at macro practice (as many students are) and will need a significant additional amount of task guidance and supervision, you may find that you are offered only a modest number of macro-practice choices. 2. You may find that your involvement in macro-level activities is highly depen-dent on forces outside the control of your field instructor or practicum site (e.g., lobbying may be possible only within a seasonal legislative session in your state, fund-raising events may already be scheduled, or a community organizing opportunity may occur only after a crisis). You might seek those opportuni-ties available during your practicum timeframe, even if they are not your first choice. Critical Thinking Question Most social workers work primarily at the micro level, providing direct services to individuals, families, and groups. How might you generate ideas about administrative, community, and policy practice that would ben-efit your clients through micro-level work? Despite these barriers, exposure to all three client-system levels is critical so that you can be prepared for social work practice at the conclusion of your studies. The follow-ing sections identify possible activities you can perform as a practicum student. Some of these activities may be possible within your practicum agency, while participation in oth-ers may entail the involvement of another agency, group, or coalition. Administrative Practice Many MSW field instructors are involved in the administrative structures or procedures of their employing agencies in addition to having direct service responsibilities to clients. Therefore, you will likely find that exposure to administrative practice will occur naturally through your field instructor throughout your practicum. However, taking an active, responsible role in administrative activities will offer you the greatest rewards relative to your learning goals. This may require you to make an explicit request of your field instructor. Consider requesting one or more of the following admin-istrative tasks/responsibilities: • Assuming an active role with the board of directors (e.g., presenting a report, facilitating client representation on the board, or participating as a member of a board committee) • Preparing part or all of the agency’s annual report (e.g., contributing to the prep-aration of the budget, developing a description of the program in which you are most heavily involved and interviewing clients to gain their perspective, or draft-ing the cover letter to be edited and signed by the executive director) • Working with a staff member to develop and gain approval for a new program for the agency (examples of program ideas include the use of students and volun-teers for a summer leadership camp or jobs programs for low-income teens and the use of students to train homebound seniors to participate in a peer-to-peer telephone support network) • Advancing the technology/communications resources of the agency (e.g., researching and presenting information about needed computer hardware and software, participating in the creation or modification of a website or web-page, training staff in the use of a new software program to provide services online, or training staff about the use of social networking sites for agency promotion) • Participating in staff recruitment and retention activities (e.g., participating in the selection of a new staff member, participating in the design and delivery of staff training on diversity issues, or supervising short-term volunteers for the agency) • Assisting with media relations and marketing efforts (e.g., drafting a new pro-gram brochure that targets an immigrant population; drafting an op-ed piece focusing on a timely issue and, after approvals, submitting the piece to a local newspaper; or working with others to create a brief video about the agency to be used as a promotional piece) • Taking part in agency networking efforts (e.g., attending a local chamber of com-merce meeting, networking with local politicians at a legislative breakfast, or par-ticipating as a volunteer in a local United Way allocations process) • Contributing to the agency’s resource development efforts (e.g., completing the literature search, needs assessment, project goals and objectives, and/or a portion of a grant proposal; researching new funding possibilities for a program; assist-ing in the search for potential major donors; or serving as an active member of a committee planning a fund-raising event for the agency) Community Practice (Planning, Development, Organizing, and Social Action) Because a relatively small number of social work students specialize in the areas of community development, organizing, and social action (Weisman & Whitaker, 2013), you may find incorporating learning experiences in this area of macro practice more challenging than integrating administrative activities. Unless you have secured a practicum site with the goal of learning these skills, you may find that your field instructor has more difficulty offering a venue for you to observe, engage in, and receive resources needed to imple-ment community planning, organizing, development, and social action skills. Opportu-nities to engage in community practice activities in direct service agencies may be very seasonal (i.e., prior to, during, or after the state legislative session), random (e.g., during an unexpected community crisis or when an agency is in need of community assessment), or highly dependent on the orientation of the members of the board of directors or agency administrators (i.e., the board’s or administration’s philosophy regarding the importance of involvement in political activities on behalf of clients). Many community planners, organizers, and developers and those involved in social action are from disciplines other than social work. The goal of practice within these areas is to empower people affected by policy in order to effect change on a scale wider than a single agency can hope to do. In addition to the administrative activities listed earlier, the following activities can help you learn community practice skills: • Participating in coalition formulation and maintenance (e.g., taking responsibility for researching organizations that may be interested in working with a coalition on a particular issue, attending a coalition meeting as a representative of your practicum agency [Bobo, Kendall, & Max, 2010], or integrating technology [the Internet, email lists, databases, and social networking sites] into coalition-building efforts [McNutt, 2013]) • Assisting with planned change techniques and interorganizational planning (e.g., assisting in organizing community hearings to allow community input into a new employment project sponsored by local government, supporting efforts to arrange meetings of community professionals to solve problems around a com-munity-wide public transportation issue, or working with government officials to plan a new summer employment and mentoring program for the county) • Engaging in macro-level advocacy efforts (e.g., organizing a large meeting of neighborhood residents and inviting local elected officials to the meeting to hold them accountable for their voting records on key issues in the last legislative ses-sion [Bobo, Kendall, & Max, 2010], participating in a demonstration, working with a group drafting legislation to fight against the building of a superhighway through the neighborhood of your clients [Kirst-Ashman & Hull, 2015], or lobby-ing a state legislator on a particular bill) • Helping with a community needs assessment/analysis (e.g., interviewing key members of the community using a structured interview to ascertain the most pressing community needs, engaging in community mapping, using a capacity inventory tool with individuals involved in your agency to ascertain the strengths and capacities inherent in local community members [Mulroy, 2013], or attending neighborhood public meetings to learn more about the issues most affecting the neighborhood) • Becoming involved in leadership development and citizen participation (e.g., con-ducting a leadership training session on the legislative process with low-income residents, organizing a letter-writing campaign by neighborhood residents, assist-ing clients with voter registration efforts, or assisting in planning a conference [ Johnson Butterfield & Chisanga, 2013]). • Taking part in community organizing (e.g., organizing and recruiting for a neigh-borhood meeting to discuss the problem of absentee landlords in the neighbor-hood; participating in the recruitment, training, and organizing of a group of low-income clients to testify at a county hearing on local spending priorities for federal funds; or inviting people to join in your organization’s efforts to reform health care for the poor) (Bobo et al., 2010) • Assuming a role in membership development and retention (e.g ., engaging in door-to-door canvassing to recruit new members, gathering signatures for a peti-tion drive at a central location in the community and recruiting new members, or planning a volunteer recognition event) • Working with economic development activities (e.g., working with low-income women to start a small business sewing infant baptismal dresses, recruiting low-income minority men to join a worker-owned cleaning company, or providing technical assistance to teen parents in their development of a cottage industry) Policy Practice Social policy impacts and shapes the lives of clients. Social workers must advocate for clients within the policy-making process. Even though policy practice may constitute a small portion of your time in practicum, seek avenues for incorporating it into your field experience. Consider the following options for gaining policy practice experiences: • Becoming involved in the legislative process (e.g., researching, preparing, and presenting testimony in support of or in opposition to a bill during a public hear-ing; meeting with legislators individually to lobby for more funding for human services; or strategizing with a coalition of advocates regarding the defeat of a harmful bill) Taking part in policy analysis and management (e.g., assisting others in provid-ing an analysis [fiscal or human cost] of proposed legislation to a local legislator [Haynes & Mickelson, 2010], assisting others in analyzing the impact on vulner-able populations of proposed regulations issued by a government entity, or writ-ing an article for the agency newsletter relating the effects of new legislation on agency clients) • Engaging in social policy research (e.g., participating in an evaluation of a new Medicaid outreach program by …

Week 5 – Social Work Values and Ethics

Week 5 – Social Work Values and Ethics
Program Transcript

Each profession has a code of ethical principles that provides a base for practice.
These codes usually focus on professionals’ responsibilities to those they serve,
to the agencies for which they work, and to society at large. The National
Association of Social Workers’ (NASW) Code of Ethics sets forth the values,
principles, and standards to guide social workers’ conduct.

NASW adheres to broad ethical principles that are based on social work’s core
values of service, social justice, dignity and worth of the person, importance of
human relationships, integrity, and competence.

This week, consider how social work values and ethical principles inform your
day-to-day skills development.

Week 5 – Social Work Values and Ethics
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