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How to become a Social Worker

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support people to make change in their lives to improve their personal and social well-being

 

What do they do?

Social workers help individuals, families and communities to deal with and resolve personal issues and social problems or support them in times of crisis. They deal with people face-to-face and work within policy development, education and research.

They can specialise in a wide range of areas including children and family, youth, violence and sexual assault, medical and health, child protection, income support, disability, education, aged care, correctional services, family law, youth justice, community legal, psychiatric and general mental health, refugees and migrants, and Indigenous communities.

“Being a social worker in the department means always being on-hand for an emergency, either an individual’s personal crisis or being a part of a national response to an emergency, such as bushfires and/or floods.”

– Yasmin Tilmouth

 

If you’re a passionate and empathetic people person who would like to help others. Or if you’re interested in breaking down barriers that contribute to inequality, discrimination, exploitation and oppression. Then social work could be a rewarding career to consider.

 

Duties:

  • Assessing clients’ needs and finding or providing appropriate support services
  • Writing letters of referral or reports to help clients obtain services they need e.g.  crisis accommodation or social security benefits
  • Helping community groups to plan and carry out programs, improve or develop services to improve their situation
  • Monitor the progress of clients by maintaining contact
  • Analyse statistics and write reports
  • Develop policies and evaluate programs
  • Manage, mentor or train other staff
  • Attend professional meetings relevant to your caseload to provide the best outcomes for clients
  • Lobby to change social welfare policies and procedures in the pursuit of social justice.

 

Skills required:

  • Empathy and emotional maturity
  • Great interpersonal skills, especially listening and communication
  • Ability to work independently or as part of a team
  • Adaptability and problem solving
  • Time management
  • Leadership skills
  • Professional ethics
  • Good analytical and report writing abilities
  • Ability to be objective

 

Pathways

AASW accredited Bachelor of Social Work and / or Master of Social Work.

Membership of the AASW.

Working with children check, First Aid Certificate (Mental Health) may be required for some positions

 

Average salary $70,928 per year (Source: Joboutlook.gov.au)

 

Job growth in this area is strong (source: Joboutlook.gov.au)

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