Chapter

Problems and possibilities in rural practice

Richard Pugh and Brain Cheers

in Rural social work

Published by Policy Press

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9781861347213
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303305 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781861347213.003.0005
Problems and possibilities in rural practice

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This chapter discusses some general issues that emerge from the experience and the literature on rural social services, particularly the problem of poor access to services, which is compounded by a lack of alternative opportunities and other supportive provision. Problems of distance from the point of delivery of services may be exacerbated by local terrain, weather, and the absence of public-transport networks. All these factors may add greatly to the costs for service users in accessing help, or, alternatively, result in higher costs for service providers. Another area of difficulty in rural social work is the fact that there is often little service back-up available. The chapter first looks at the question of access to services, and then reviews several of the assumptions and issues that face some people in rural areas, including isolation, stoicism, and stigmatisation. It also considers the question of the higher costs of service and different approaches to the funding of rural services, and examines partnerships with service users, carers, and other organisations.

Keywords: social services; isolation; stoicism; stigmatisation; costs; funding; partnerships; access to services; public transport; rural social work

Chapter.  9054 words. 

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