My observation from the initial meeting of the service user, her husband, son and carer I was happy with my judgement concerning the matter. I have learnt to take every case individually before deciding on an outcome. The functions of principles in work practice give social workers guidelines to follow by using their professional knowledge and experience to promote human dignity and worth. It is important that the priority of service users are considered and be given informed consent regarding their welfare.
The functions of principles in work practice promote fairness, workers have to adhere to the anti discriminatory policies. It ensures that they do not act out of prejudice against any person or group on the grounds of origin, ethnicity, sex, age or disability. The principles guide social workers to adhere in protecting the rights and interests of service users and their carers by supporting them to make informed choices about their care. The principles ensure social workers to place service users’ needs and interests before their own beliefs.
Principles affect professional practice as it gives guide lines to follow. It gives the knowledge and understanding of the professional code of ethics and the code of practice to follow in order to carry out duties fairly with empathy and without prejudice and to adhere to the anti discrimination policies within the framework. The principles protect the social worker and the service user and this enhances a good service delivery. The Principles promotes respect for human dignity and pursues social justice so as to eliminate all violation of human rights.
My ability to use skills of empowerment in this case study was giving the service user a break from her abusive husband. She was liberated for a few hours a day to be able to meet friendly people, engage in conversation and join in activities run by the centre. Mrs M opened up and was able to talk about her problems at ease. She was cheerful and her son noticed the drastic change in his mother. By empowering Mrs M her self esteem rose she was then referred to a support group which offers counselling services.
I used advocacy skills to put her through agencies that will help her in a long term. The advocacy skills were also used to bring mother and son and closely together. The son offered to come to some of the sessions and he promised to take his Mum to his house during the Christmas holidays. Our organisation has a policy of user-involvement in their care needs. The service users are involved at all levels regarding their care they all have allocated key workers who liaise with them regarding their welfare needs and their carers are also involved with any decision making.
They are encouraged to bring ideas and there is a service user’s committee group in place which meets once a month to voice out concerns or comments that might arise. The service users are given feedback on events and any decisions made concerning the centre and are briefed on the complaints procedure. The skills of empowerment, advocacy and user involvement are needed in professional practice so as to give the service users the right level of care they need. It gives the services users and their carers a fair choice and say in their care.
The social worker is able to carry out their duty in line with the professional code of practice and conduct. This helps to curb bad practices and promotes moral and job satisfaction. The impact of using social work skills in my work has enabled me to help the client from the situation she was in. She has broken certain barriers by interacting with people of her age group raising her self esteem. It gave the service user confidence and was no more socially isolated. Mrs M’s attendance to the centre was a well deserved respite from her home environment.
Introducing her to the counselling service will help in the long term, may be she will have the confidence to stand up for herself in the near future. The service users’ son was able to see his Mum in a different light and was happy to take her to his house for Christmas. The client has been empowered to take certain decision about her life. The Impact of using social work skills has enabled me to reflect on my dealings with other service users treating every case as individual and using the skills to decide on the outcome with the approval of my Manager.
The benefits of using social work skills in my work with clients gives the power to assess every case by its merits and adhere to the Anti Discriminatory Policies at all times. There are limitations due to budget cuts on resources it is very difficult for social workers to carry out their duties efficiently without someone being at a disadvantage. What are happening within the organisation are budget cuts on services therefore it is very difficult for social workers to make decisions about their clients.
Before a package of care is purchased the client has to meet the eligibility criteria and means tested. If the service user has the means to pay he will be assessed straight away care package will be place. On the other hand if the client has no means and on a low pension with no savings the case will have to go In front of a panel that will make a decision regarding the client’s needs. This takes about two weeks to set up and by that time a life may be at risk. The social work skills used in my work practice promotes team work and effective communication within the teams.
The only draw back is where sometimes managers put money before human welfare where people’s lives are at risk and workers have to justify their reasons for intervention. I hope this lady in my case study is empowered by all the counselling she is receiving to enable her make informed decision about her life and future.