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Social work in PhilippinesSocial work in Philippines

Social work in Philippines

Social work in Philippines is a profession that focuses on assisting individuals, families, and communities to enhance their well-being and improve their overall quality of life. Social workers in the Philippines play a crucial role in addressing various social issues and challenges faced by vulnerable and marginalized populations.

Here are some key aspects of social work in the Philippines:

  • Education and Training: To become a licensed social worker in Philippines, one must earn a Bachelor of Science in Social Work (BSSW) degree from a Commission on Higher Education (CHED)-accredited institution. The program typically takes four years to complete and includes theoretical and practical training in various social work areas.
  • Professional Regulation: The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) oversees the licensure and regulation of social workers in the Philippines. Social workers need to pass the Social Workers Licensure Examination conducted by the PRC to practice legally in the country.
  • Areas of Practice: Social workers in Philippines work in a wide range of settings, including government agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), hospitals, schools, community centers, and correctional facilities. They address issues such as poverty, child welfare, domestic violence, mental health, substance abuse, and disaster response.
  • Advocacy and Policy Development: Social workers in Philippines also play an essential role in advocating for social justice and social welfare policies. They work with policymakers to develop and implement programs that address social issues and improve the lives of the disadvantaged.
  • Family and Child Welfare: Child and family welfare is a significant focus area for social workers in the Philippines. They work to protect children’s rights, prevent child abuse and neglect, and support families in crisis through counselling and assistance programs.
  • Disaster Response and Crisis Intervention: With the Philippines being prone to natural disasters, social workers are actively involved in disaster response and crisis intervention efforts. They provide psychosocial support and help affected communities to recover and rebuild.
  • Community Development: Social workers engage in community development projects to empower communities, enhance their capacities, and promote self-sufficiency. They work with local leaders and stakeholders to identify and address the unique needs of each community.
  • Social Work Code of Ethics: Social workers in Philippines are bound by a code of ethics that outlines their professional responsibilities, including confidentiality, respect for human dignity, and a commitment to promoting social justice.

The social work profession in Philippines is continually evolving to address the changing needs and challenges faced by the population. Social workers play a vital role in supporting the vulnerable and promoting social welfare in the country.

International definition of social work

History of social work in the Philippines

The history of social work in the Philippines can be traced back to the early 20th century when the profession began to take shape and establish its roots in the country. Here is an overview of the key milestones in the history of social work in the Philippines:

  • Early Beginnings: Social work principles and practices started to gain recognition in the Philippines during the American colonial period, which began in 1898. American social workers and educators introduced the profession’s concepts and methodologies, contributing to the development of social services in the country.
  • Establishment of Formal Social Work Education: The formal education of social work in Philippines began in the 1920s. Concepcion A. Dadufalza, who later became known as the “Mother of Social Work in the Philippines,” studied social work in the United States and returned to the Philippines to advocate for the profession. She played a crucial role in the establishment of the Department of Social Work at the University of the Philippines (UP) in 1937, offering the first formal social work education in the country.
  • Founding of Professional Organizations: The Philippine Association of Social Workers (PASW) was founded on November 12, 1947, and officially incorporated on April 18, 1948. It served as the first national professional organization representing social workers in the Philippines. PASW played a significant role in promoting the profession, setting ethical standards, and advocating for social justice.
  • Expansion of Social Work Education: In the following decades, more universities and colleges across the Philippines introduced social work programs, leading to the growth of the profession, and increasing the number of social work practitioners.
  • Development of Social Services: Social workers in Philippines actively participated in the development and implementation of social services and programs. They were involved in addressing various social issues, including poverty, child welfare, mental health, community development, and disaster response.
  • Professional Regulation: To ensure the quality and competence of social work practitioners, the government introduced licensure examinations for social workers. The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) conducts the Social Workers Licensure Examination, which social work graduates must pass to practice legally in the country.
  • Inclusion of Social Work in Government Agencies: Social work principles were incorporated into various government agencies, particularly the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). Social workers play an essential role in providing social services, implementing welfare programs, and responding to social crises and emergencies.
  • Continuing Professional Development: Social workers in Philippines engage in ongoing professional development to keep abreast of new developments in the field, improve their skills, and enhance their practice’s effectiveness.

The history of social work in the Philippines reflects a journey of growth and development, with social workers making significant contributions to the well-being of Filipino communities and the advancement of social welfare in the country.

Fields of social work in the Philippines

Social work in Philippines encompasses a wide range of fields and practice areas. Social workers play crucial roles in addressing various social issues and providing services to individuals, families, and communities in need. Some of the key fields of social work in the Philippines include:

  1. Child Welfare: Social workers in this field focus on the well-being and protection of children. They work with children at risk, those experiencing abuse or neglect, and those in need of alternative care arrangements. Child welfare social workers also assist in adoption processes and support foster care placements.
  2. Family and Community Development: Social workers in this field work with families and communities to enhance their capacity and promote self-sufficiency. They provide counselling, support, and empowerment programs to strengthen family units and community structures.
  3. Health and Mental Health: Social workers in this area provide psychosocial support and counselling to individuals facing health challenges and mental health issues. They collaborate with medical professionals and other stakeholders to ensure holistic care and support for patients and their families.
  4. Disability Services: Social workers working with individuals with disabilities aim to improve their quality of life and ensure their inclusion in society. They assist with accessing resources, advocating for disability rights, and providing support for independent living.
  5. School Social Work: School social workers work within educational settings to address the social, emotional, and behavioral challenges that students may face. They provide counseling, crisis intervention, and support services to students, teachers, and families.
  6. Community Development: Social workers engaged in community development focus on empowering communities, addressing social issues, and promoting sustainable development. They work with local leaders and stakeholders to identify community needs and implement projects that enhance well-being.
  7. Gerontology and Aging Services: Social workers specializing in gerontology provide support to older adults and their families. They address issues related to aging, long-term care, elder abuse, and end-of-life planning.
  8. Disaster Response and Humanitarian Assistance: Social workers play essential roles in disaster response and humanitarian efforts. They provide psychosocial support, coordinate relief efforts, and assist affected communities in rebuilding after disasters.
  9. Criminal Justice and Rehabilitation: Social workers in this field work with individuals involved in the criminal justice system. They focus on rehabilitation, reintegration, and supporting individuals to lead productive lives after incarceration.
  10. Policy and Advocacy: Social workers also engage in policy analysis and advocacy to influence social welfare policies and promote social justice. They work with policymakers to create programs and initiatives that address social issues effectively.

These are just some of the fields of social work in Philippines, and social workers may also specialize in other areas based on their interests and expertise. The profession continues to evolve and adapt to address the ever-changing needs of the Filipino population.

Example of social work in Philippines

Disaster Response and Relief:

In the Philippines, social workers play a crucial role in disaster response and relief efforts, especially in a country prone to natural disasters like typhoons, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions.

Example Scenario in social work in Philippines:

After a powerful typhoon strikes a coastal community, causing widespread damage and displacement, social workers are deployed to the affected area as part of a disaster response team. Their primary goal is to provide psychosocial support and assistance to the affected individuals and families.

  1. Needs Assessment: Social workers conduct rapid assessments to identify the immediate needs of the affected population. They interact with survivors, families who lost their homes, and individuals who may be emotionally distressed due to the traumatic experience.
  2. Psychosocial Support: Social workers provide counselling and emotional support to survivors who may be dealing with grief, loss, trauma, or anxiety. They create safe spaces for people to share their experiences and feelings, offering a listening ear and empathy.
  3. Access to Resources: Social workers facilitate access to resources such as emergency shelter, food, clean water, and medical services. They collaborate with other humanitarian agencies and government departments to ensure a coordinated response to the disaster.
  4. Reunification of Families: In cases where families have been separated during the disaster, social workers assist in reuniting family members and establishing communication channels.
  5. Assistance in Recovery and Rehabilitation: Social workers work with communities to develop recovery and rehabilitation plans. They involve the affected community members in decision-making processes and help in rebuilding their lives and livelihoods.
  6. Protection of Vulnerable Groups: Social workers pay special attention to vulnerable groups like children, elderly individuals, pregnant women, and people with disabilities. They ensure these groups receive the necessary care and support, protecting them from exploitation and abuse.
  7. Advocacy for Policy Change: Social workers use their experiences from the disaster response to advocate for policy changes and improvements in disaster preparedness, response, and relief efforts at both local and national levels.

This example illustrates how social workers in the Philippines actively engage in disaster response and relief efforts to assist communities during challenging times. Their expertise in providing psychosocial support, community engagement, and advocacy helps in restoring resilience and facilitating recovery in the aftermath of natural disasters.

Social work in Philippines: concept of social welfare

Schools offering social work in the Philippines

several universities and colleges in the Philippines offer social work programs. Please note that program offerings may change over time, so it’s essential to verify the availability of social work programs directly with the institutions. Here are some universities known for offering social work courses:

  • University of the Philippines Diliman (UP Diliman)
    • College of Social Work and Community Development (CSWCD)
  • University of Santo Tomas (UST)
    • College of Social Sciences and Philosophy (CSSP)
  • De La Salle University (DLSU)
    • College of Liberal Arts (CLA)
  • Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU)
    • Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • University of the Philippines Manila (UP Manila)
    • College of Arts and Sciences (CAS)
  • Miriam College
    • College of Arts and Letters (CAL)
  • Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP)
    • College of Social Sciences and Development (CSSD)
  • Philippine Normal University (PNU)
    • College of Social Work and Community Development (CSWCD)
  • University of the East (UE)
    • College of Arts and Sciences (CAS)
  • St. Scholastica’s College Manila
    • School of Social Work
  • Central Luzon State University (CLSU)
    • College of Social Work and Community Development (CSWCD)
  • Benguet State University (BSU)
    • College of Social Sciences
  • Mindanao State University (MSU)
    • College of Social Sciences and Humanities (CSSH)

These are just a few examples of the institutions in the Philippines offering social work programs. Prospective students interested in pursuing social work studies should contact the universities directly to get the most up-to-date information on program availability, admission requirements, and curriculum details.

Pioneers of social work in the Philippines

Several individuals have played crucial roles as pioneers of social work in the Philippines, shaping the development and growth of the profession. Here are some notable pioneers:

  • Concepcion A. Dadufalza (1896-1991): Considered the “Mother of Social Work in the Philippines,” Concepcion Dadufalza was a social work educator and practitioner. She studied social work in the United States and returned to the Philippines in the 1920s to promote the profession. Dadufalza founded the Department of Social Work at the University of the Philippines (UP) in 1937, becoming its first chairperson. She was instrumental in establishing social work as an academic discipline in the country.
  • Corazon Alma De Leon (1906-1994): Corazon De Leon was a social worker and educator who made significant contributions to the professionalization of social work in the Philippines. She was the first Filipino social worker to hold a doctorate degree in social work, which she earned from the University of Chicago in 1953. De Leon served as the Dean of the College of Social Work and Community Development at UP and actively promoted the integration of social work principles in various social welfare agencies.
  • Clara M. Aragon (1917-2002): Clara Aragon was another pioneering figure in Philippine social work. She was a prominent educator and practitioner, recognized for her dedication to the advancement of social work education. Aragon co-founded the Philippine Association of Social Workers (PASWI) in 1952 and served as its first president. Her efforts were instrumental in uniting social workers across the country and promoting professional standards in the field.
  • Mary Constance Pascual (1928-1999): Mary Constance Pascual was a social work educator and advocate who contributed significantly to the development of social work education in the Philippines. She served as the Chairperson of the Department of Social Work at UP and played an essential role in expanding the social work curriculum to address emerging social issues.
  • Teresita Erestain (1929-2011): Teresita Erestain was a renowned social worker and educator who made significant contributions to the advancement of social work in the Philippines. She was one of the founding members of PASWI and served as its president. Erestain was also instrumental in establishing the Philippine Association of Schools of Social Work (PASSW) to promote collaboration among social work schools.

These pioneers of social work in the Philippines laid the groundwork for the profession’s growth and development, establishing its academic foundations, promoting ethical standards, and advocating for social justice and welfare in the country. Their contributions have inspired generations of social workers to serve the Filipino community and address its diverse social challenges.

what is social welfare administration

Philippine Association of Social Workers (PASW)

The Philippine Association of Social Workers (PASW) was established on November 12, 1947, and officially incorporated on April 18, 1948. Subsequently, it was re-incorporated with the Securities and Exchange Commission on October 18, 1988, under the new name “Philippine Association of Social Workers, Incorporated” (PASWI), which has now become widely recognized.

PASWI envisions a humane and just Filipino society that respects the dignity of the human person through the free and full exercise of her/his economic, social, political, and spiritual rights and responsibilities.

Vision of PASWI

Mission. As a professional organization PASWI commit ourselves to the following:

  • To strengthen professional competence of social workers;
  • To contribute to solutions to emerging social issues and trends;
  • To promote a sense of accountability and responsibility among its leaders and members; and
  • To strengthen solidarity among its members and key partners in local and global communities.

Services/Programs by PASWI:

  • Conducts Continuing Professional Education
  • Assist distress vulnerable groups specially women and children in communities under danger in times of calamities;
  • Link and connect social workers in need of medical support to government agencies concern;
  • Lobby to legislative officials benefits of social workers

Major social issues in Philippine or issues about social work in the Philippines

Philippines faced several major social issues that continue to impact the country’s population and development. It is essential to note that the situation may have evolved since then, but here are some significant social issues that were prevalent at that time:

  • Poverty: Poverty remains a persistent problem in the Philippines, with a significant portion of the population living below the poverty line. Income inequality, lack of access to quality education, limited job opportunities, and inadequate social services are among the factors contributing to the prevalence of poverty.
  • Education: Despite efforts to improve education, access to quality education remains a challenge, particularly in rural and marginalized communities. Issues such as lack of school infrastructure, teacher shortages, and low student retention rates hinder the country’s progress in addressing educational disparities.
  • Health Care: Access to adequate healthcare services is uneven across the Philippines. Many Filipinos still lack access to basic healthcare facilities, especially in remote and underprivileged areas. Health concerns such as communicable diseases, maternal and child health, and non-communicable diseases pose ongoing challenges.
  • Unemployment and Underemployment: The Philippines has struggled with high rates of unemployment and underemployment. Many people, especially the youth, face difficulty finding stable and well-paying jobs that match their skills and qualifications.
  • Corruption: Corruption is a significant issue that affects various sectors of Philippine society, from government agencies to private businesses. It undermines trust in public institutions, hinders economic growth, and perpetuates social inequalities.
  • Crime and Security: Crime rates and security concerns have been a pressing issue, particularly in urban areas. Issues such as drug-related crimes, gang violence, and petty theft have been areas of concern for law enforcement and policymakers.
  • Human Rights: The Philippines has faced challenges related to human rights violations, including extrajudicial killings, attacks on activists and journalists, and the treatment of marginalized groups, particularly indigenous peoples and LGBTQ+ communities.
  • Environmental Degradation: Environmental issues, such as deforestation, pollution, and climate change, have severe implications for the Philippines’ ecosystems and natural resources. Natural disasters like typhoons, earthquakes, and flooding also pose significant risks.
  • Trafficking and Exploitation: Human trafficking remains a grave concern in the Philippines, with many vulnerable individuals, including women and children, being subjected to exploitation, and forced labour.
  • Housing and Urbanization: Rapid urbanization has led to housing challenges, with many urban poor living in informal settlements with inadequate access to basic services and amenities.

Addressing these social issues requires comprehensive and sustained efforts from government agencies, civil society organizations, and other stakeholders to foster inclusive development and social progress in the Philippines.

FAQs

  1. What is social work in Philippines? Social work is a profession that helps people and communities facing challenges.
  2. What do social workers do in Philippines? They provide support, counseling, and resources to those in need.
  3. Are social workers licensed in Philippines? Yes, social workers need to be licensed by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).
  4. Where do social workers work in Philippines? They work in government agencies, NGOs, schools, and communities.
  5. What are the main goals of social work in Philippines? To improve people’s well-being, promote social justice, and reduce poverty.
  6. Do social workers in Philippines handle child welfare? Yes, they focus on protecting and assisting children in difficult circumstances.
  7. Can social workers in Philippines work with disaster-affected communities? Yes, they play a vital role in providing aid and support during disasters.
  8. Do social workers in Philippines deal with mental health? Yes, they offer counseling and assistance to individuals with mental health challenges.
  9. How can someone become a social worker in the Philippines? By completing a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and passing the licensure exam.
  10. What is the primary government agency for social work in Philippines? The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

By Admin