Race and Ethnicity in the United States
The issue that is Race and ethnicity has been dominating for quite along time the American media and the political talk of the day. As much as President Barrack Obama was elected as the first black president of the United States critics still have it that racism and ethnicity is still in the mind of many Americans and is demonstrated even in their day to day activities. As such this research paper is meant to unearth the truth from a sociological perspective of these allegations. In doing this paper tries to answer the questions that are: Do these vices exist? What is the sociological explanation of the existence of these vices?
Stratification and Social Inequality
The condition of some largely varying disparity on the distribution of wealth, prestige or power is called inequality. When such system is hierarchically formulated it is referred to as stratification. It’s an organised and well formulated group of people that ensures the continual trend of economic disparity. This is contrary to achieved status where a position that is socially inclined is attained through ones own effort.
Management in social work involves having some level of administrative responsibility for a social agency or other unit. For this case the worker will facilitate acquisition of basic needs by Linda through Undugu society. The worker is a service provider. For Linda the worker takes her to Kitengela home for partial residence as she arranges for a school for her to attend (Zastrow & Kirst-Ashman 97).
Educator: The educator’s role involves giving information and teaching skills to clients and other systems. To be an effective educator, the worker must first be knowledgeable. Additionally, the worker must be a good communicator so that information is conveyed clearly and is understood by the client (Zastrow & Kirst-Ashman 65). The worker educates Linda on the need for starting a new life, the dangers of drug abuse and the need of quitting and staying sober. The worker educates Linda on the education and schools available and as to why she needs to attend school without fail (Cabot 166).
Analyst/Evaluator: Social workers with a broad knowledge base of how various systems function can analyze or evaluate how well programs and systems work. They can also evaluate the effectiveness of their own interventions (Zastrow and Kirst-Ashman 69). The worker has to examine progress of Linda at school or place of training to ensure that the intervention was successful.
Social work is all about dealing with the various problems that besiege a society. A society as a system is quite complex to analyze and the social problems that are created are even more complex. To deal with a problem, through social work, firstly, source of the problem needs to be clearly identified and an effective solution needs to be devised to deal with it. A social work theory is devised to do just that. It provides a methodology for social work practitioners to analyze the problems and find solutions. In this article, I provide an overview of modern social work theory that has diverged into various schools of thought.
Social Psychology Theories
Social psychology is focused on helping us understand and explain social behavior. Social theories are generally centered on specific social phenomena, including group behavior, pro-social behavior, social influence, love and much more. According to this theory Linda’s abuse of drugs and lifestyle had much to do wither social settings as well as the company she kept. The best intervention according to this theory is to isolate Linda from the street, provide her with useful things to do as well as great peers and role models.
Humanist theories instead emphasized the basic goodness of human beings. For the case of Linda the case worker focuses on the idea that change is inevitable and every person given a chance can change. The worker focuses on the good characteristics of Linda like her desire for a better life; desire to quit abusing drugs and to work hard in school.
Individualism vs. Communitarianism
In some forms of communitarian ideology, people seem to be merely means to an end. In social work, we wonder: Are individuals valuable in themselves, or can they be used in the achieving of some larger goal, such as equality or greater social cohesion? It is difficult to deny that a choice can and must be made. The payoff is that in social activism and social work, the worker's activity can either be directed to the individual here and now or to a larger goal that .in reference to this theory the workers intervention are directed to the welfare of Linda a s an individual. The theory emphasizes on the intervention being for individual benefit or societal. For the case of Linda the benefits are more personalized (Cabot 88).
Service Delivery Possibilities Through the Use of Groups
In many instances, service can be rendered to persons through groups which would not be possible in a one-to-one relationship. Persons in a group can gain support and strength from one another. Through the very act of getting out of their homes, they can broaden their horizons and apply new insight into the areas of day-to-day living. To be specific, so many services can be delivered through organized group activities. Picnics, parties, games, talent shows, bowling, field trips, and swimming .the worker concentrates on involving Linda with activities performed by other children at the home for motivation. Linda may go to school with other girls for social integration.
Use of Group Work as a Social Work Technique
A group is composed of two or more persons interacting together and. has definite goals and needs that it seeks to fulfill together. They have a bond which holds them together and also separates them from any other group or individual. Social group work is a service provided by many agencies to enhance the social and emotional growth of persons needing this type of experience. In order to be successful, social group work requires a skilled group worker and the ways in which the worker helps the group depends upon the specific purpose for which the group was formed. The worker in this case study involves Linda in groups of girls and boys who have been through the same and are rehabilitated in discussing the ways of coping. Different former street children discuss there problems on the streets and how the program has helped them. They could also give support to each other to deal with drug abuse.
The worker who approaches his/her work with enthusiasm seems far more accomplished than the one who is apathetic. As everyone knows, enthusiasm is contagious and the Social Worker who has this attribute will gain pleasure from the job and consumers who are served will become happier and more responsive people. Street children take time to be fully rehabilitated. For example some children may opt to continue the bad habits like pick pocketing and use of drugs. The worker has to be persistent with intervention to strictly follow up to ensure the intervention is followed to the letter.
Purposeful Expression of Feelings – Clients need to have opportunities to express their feelings freely to the social worker. As social workers, we must go beyond "just the facts" to uncover the underlying feelings. The worker undertakes the task of finding out from Linda how she feels about the program, the worker must allow Linda identify the most appropriate intervention for example Linda may be allowed to chose whether or not they want to do artisan courses or go for formal education and if so how do they feel about it.
Non-judgmentalism – Communicating non-judgmentalism is essential to developing a relationship with any client. It does not imply that social workers do not make decisions; rather it implies a non blaming attitude and behavior. Social workers judge others as neither good or bad nor as worthy or unworthy. The children may have behaviors that are not very pleasant but the worker has to bear with them. The worker cannot judge them for using drugs or stealing but help them change (Cabot 111).
Organizational skills are skills of doing things in a specified procedure. A case worker had to work systematically for goal achievement. For the case of Linda the worker has to create schedules for group work, when Linda should go to school, time for recreation among other things. The worker has to plan on how they would implement there task; create a plan on how to do tasks. For example plan interviews, group work.
Social workers should have generic practice skills, which include an understanding of individual and family counseling as well as an understanding of group work and community organization. Social workers should know about resources and be able to connect clients to these resources (mediation). For this case knowledge has been borrowed from sociology which indicates the various sections of society. How people behave the way they do due to socialization.
Linda has been enrolled at Kitengela kindergarten. She is so far the best student in the class. She has fully recovered from drug use and stealing. She learns artwork and beading for the weekend.
- Cabot, Meg. Being Nikki. New York: Scholastic Inc., 2009.
- Zastrow, Charles & Kirst-Ashman Karen K. Understanding Human Behavior and the Social
- Environment. 8th ed. New York: Cengage Learning, 2009.