Centre for Research in Psychology and Human Well-Being

 

Social Work Profession

Social work is the helping profession.

 

What is Social Work?

Social work is a practice-based profession and an academic discipline that promotes social change and development, social cohesion, and the empowerment and liberation of people. Principles of social justice, human rights, collective responsibility and respect for diversities are central to social work.  Underpinned by theories of social work, social sciences, humanities and indigenous knowledge, social work engages people and structures to address life challenges and enhance wellbeing. The above definition may be amplified at national and/or regional levels (IFSW, 2014)

Worldwide, society is suffering from many social problems, including poverty, unemployment, unequal opportunities, racism, malnutrition, crime, domestic violence, substance abuse, mental illnesses and many other issues that makes it difficult for people to achieve their full potential. This is where social workers come in.

Social work is the helping profession. Social workers undertake sophisticated assessments in relation to issues of care, support and protection in order to empower and improve the life of individuals and society. Social workers have a strong interest in human relationships and a commitment to social justice, along with with well-developed social, empathic and communication skills. Social workers often work with other services including health, education, housing and the justice system.

In Malaysia,  governmental and non-governmental organisations offer job opportunities for social workers. The Department of Social Welfare Malaysia is controlled by the Malaysian government through the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development, which provides largest social services in the country. Social services include the benefits and facilities, including protection for children and vulnerable young people, treatments and rehabilitation for offenders and drug users, and support for senior citizens and persons with disabilities.

Social services are a core element of all Malaysian social systems. NGOs are also an important actor for delivering social services in Malaysia. Hundreds NGOs have been established in the country in order to provide care and protection for vulnerable individuals, families and communities.