Working with entire communities and organizations might seem overwhelming, due to the large number of people involved. Where do you begin? It might be a relief to know that the GIM is just as useful to social workers practicing at the macro level as it is for those practicing at the micro and mezzo levels. In fact, you begin the process in the same way with proper engagement and the appropriate form of assessment before enacting an intervention.
Successful engagement and assessment depends on strong interpersonal skills, regardless of the level of intervention. In some respects, skills such as empathy, warmth, genuineness, and general rapport-building are the same for macro work as they are for micro and mezzo work—they just may be applied in a different way. In other respects, this level of intervention depends on additional skills not often identified as social work-related, including negotiating, mediating, assessing, and budgeting.
How might you utilize these skills when engaging and assessing communities? A competent and successful social work policy practitioner is able to meld these skills. This is of particular necessity when the goal is social change.
For this Assignment, review this week’s Resources. Refer to the community you selected for this week’s Discussion. Then imagine that you have been assigned to complete a needs assessment and identify potential resources for this community. You elected to interview key informants as one form of assessing this community. Consider who you would contact as a key informant for this community. Finally, think about how you might engage the informant to obtain the community details to complete your needs assessment.
Assignment: (2- to 4-page paper in APA format). Please use all three references
Your paper should include the following:
Support your Assignment with specific references to the Resources. Be sure to provide full APA citations for your references.
Itzhaky, H., & York, A. S. (2002). Showing results in community organization. Social Work, 47(2), 125-131. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
Knee, R. T., & Folsom, J. (2012). Bridging the crevasse between direct practice social work and management by increasing the transferability of core skills. Administration in Social Work, 36(4), 390–408. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
Rome, S. H., & Hoechstetter, S. (2010). Social work and civic engagement: The political participation of professional social workers. Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, 37(3), 107–129.
Here is supplemental information on the community I chose:
The community I selected is a beautiful family-oriented community that thrives on the cohesiveness of bridging the gap between youths and the matriarchs of the community to promote. This community center is the focal point of the community for its resources, community activities and political enrichment. The strengths of this community are based on the community center advocating for youths and adults and encompass under its umbrella of having a Head Start Early Learning Center, as well as offices and areas for community meetings and events.
“The generalist practitioner must be acutely aware of how global or national trends at the macro level significantly affect the micro and mezzo levels. (Kirst-Ashman, 2015). I have been part of this community most of my life and although I moved out of the community 14 years ago, I still work in the community advocating for programs for youths and adults from health, education/after school programs, mental health, programs, etc. I have a knowledge base of financial funding from federal, state and political support to enhance the resources for the residents of this community. Over the years we have seen a decline in the crime rate and have been blessed to have the support of politicians and having built a collaboration with law enforcement.
The challenges of this low-to-moderate income community is assisting clients and families with the funding for participation in activities for sports and assist with utilities, rent, and mental health issues. I believe as a social worker I can assist the community with them seeing their challenges as a strength by providing resources like grant assistance for programming, implementing a mental health program, getting support from other agencies to support the center for growth while they promote their self-sufficiency.
Kirst-Ashman, K. K. (2015). Brooks/Cole Empowerment Series: Understanding Generalist Practice, 7th Edition. [MBS Direct].
Questions asked by the instructor to answer in an essay also:
Consider the challenges of your community. What is the rationale as to how those challenges came into existence? What supports, resources, policies, or programs would the community need to remedy their challenges?