Strengths-based approach to social work practice with older persons

Ponnuswami, Ilango, Francis, Abraham, and Udhayakumar, P. (2012) Strengths-based approach to social work practice with older persons. In: Pulla, Venkat, Chenoweth, Lesley, Francis, Abraham, and Bakaj, Stefan, (eds.) Papers in Strengths Based Practice. Allied Publishers, New Delhi, India, pp. 150-161.

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Strengths-based approaches generally conceptualize strengths in two distinct ways. First, assets, resources, and abilities that can be used to assist in helping an individual to continue to develop. Accordingly, strengths are used as building blocks for service planning and programme development. Second, sorne strengths can be developed or enhanced. Consequently, changes in the availability of various assets, resources, and abilities for an individual can be viewed as a service delivery outcome. In working with oIder persons, the strengths-based approaches can prove to be extremely useful in view of the fact that most elderly have an enormous repertoire of knowledge, practice wisdom and a wide range of skill sets and by and large, helping professionals approach the whole issue of working with the elderly from a perspective of dealing with dependency and burden of care associated with it. Particularly; social work interventions, in order to be effective, need to be offered from the standpoint of strengths-based approach rather than other paternalistic models of care. There is a strong .emphasis of the 'elderly as a resource' perspective in the field of ageing and various international bodies such as the United Nations have been advocating this paradigm shift among all stakeholders including the older persons themselves. Almost all nations have included this as an important aspect in their national policies and programmes for the elderly the most significant ones being China's National Programme on Ageing and India's National Policy for Older Persons. The authors examine the relevance of strengths-based approaches to social work practice with oIder persons ftom a global perspective, provide strategies for social work interventions and discuss the challenges for the profession.

Item ID: 25554
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-81-8424-810-4
Date Deposited: 17 Mar 2013 23:22
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160701 Clinical Social Work Practice @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920410 Mental Health @ 30%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940103 Ageing and Older People @ 70%
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