Chapter

Family-focused social work: professional challenges of the 21 st century

Sigrún Júlíusdóttir

in Social work and child welfare politics

Published by Policy Press

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9781847424068
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303534 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847424068.003.0006
Family-focused social work: professional challenges of the 21 st century

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This chapter explores the ideological roots of social work with families and child welfare. The relevance of preserving the original spirit of the holistic approach when working for contemporary psychosocial welfare is also highlighted. Two key concepts in that developmental process are autonomy and democratisation, both highly real in work with human interaction in family relationships. Next, revised social landscape of functions and phenomena confronting the contemporary family social worker are investigated. The discussion of some crucial dimensions of postmodern social change — individualisation, family values and solidarity — implies a need for a rethinking of the role of the contemporary family social worker. By processing professional experience through research and participation in the social debate, it is possible to contribute to deeper insights among politicians and policy makers concerning family relationships and welfare in a broader perspective.

Keywords: social work; families; child welfare; contemporary psychosocial welfare; individualisation; family values; solidarity

Chapter.  6422 words. 

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