Humanitarian Support Worker

Engaging with Individuals and Families in partnership as a Humanitarian Support Worker

Assessment 1: Written Responses (5 x 500 words each, Total 2500 Words)

Introduction to Case Study

Erica (age 30 years) has contacted a local community centre. Erica says she lives with her partner James (Jim) and two children Jemima (13) and Isaac (4). Jim works full time in the building industry and the family relocated from interstate 8 months ago so he could take up a better paid job on the recommendation of a friend who was already living here. All of their extended family are back in their home town.

A couple of months ago, Jim was charged by the police for driving under the influence of alcohol and now his driver’s licence has been suspended for 12 months following a court appearance. Erica said she has found out Jim has been having problems at work. They can’t afford for him to lose his job and he has been spending a lot of the family budget going out and drinking with friends on the weekends. Erica has a background working in retail and administration but hasn’t been working for some time as she wanted to settle the kids in after the move and now Jemima has just changed schools again and Isaac has started pre-school.

She has noticed Jim is often frustrated with the kids and things are tense at home. Erica said she didn’t really want to tell anyone about their problems, but she spoke to her neighbour about what has been happening when they noticed she looked down and said they had heard her arguing again with Jim last night. They gave her the name of the Centre and said they had used this service when they needed help and found it useful.

Module 1 (500 words)
Imagine you are a Humanitarian Support Worker in the Wellbeing Support Team of the local community centre, and you have been asked to see Erica (your ‘client’) for her first appointment.

What are your impressions of Erica’s situation based on this referral? Why?

Using the professional Code of Ethics relevant to your chosen discipline (Australian Community Worker’s Association, ACWA), briefly outline the main ethical principles you might need to consider when working with Erica and her family. Why is this important?

As a Human Service Worker, what is your understanding of ‘working in partnership’ with clients? How would this guide your practice with Erica in this initial session and what could you say/ask or do during this first meeting to reflect this approach?

Essential Readings (MUST ONLY be referenced from the sources mentioned below in APA 6th format with proper in text citations):

Text Book:

1. Chenoweth, L., & McAuliffe, D. (2015). The road to social work & human service practice. Cengage Learning Australia.

2. Maidment, J., & Egan, R. (2016). (Eds.) (3rd ed.). Practice skills in social work and welfare: More than just common sense. Crows Nest, NSW: Allen and Unwin. (Chapter 1 The Integrated Framework Page 3-18 and Chapter 13 Working with Families Page 196 – 206)

3. Payne, M (2014) Modern Social Work Theory, Palgrave Macmillan Chapters 1,2,3

Practice Resources: ACWA Code of Ethics

Review e-readings for Introduction to Human Services

1. O’Connor, I., Wilson, J. & Setterlund, D. (1998) Social work and welfare practice (Chapter 1) in O’ Connor, I., Wilson, J., & Setterlund, D. (eds) (1998) Social Work and Welfare Practice (3rd Ed). South Melbourne, VIC: Longman.

2. Hepworth, D.H., Rooney, R.H., Rooney, G.D., Strom- Gottfried, K., Larsen, J.A., (2010) ‘Direct Practice: Domain, Philosophy and Roles’. Chapter 2 in Direct Social Work Practice Theory and Skills Seventh Edition, Thomson Brooks/Cole Victoria

3. Bryson, L (1995) Family, state, market and citizenship (Chapter 2) in Weeks, W. & Wilson, J. (1995) Issues facing Australian families. (2nd ed). Longman. Melbourne

Review e-readings Communication Skills

1. Boyle, S. (2006) Basic skills for engagement (Chapter 4) in Boyle, S (2006) Direct practice in social work. Pearson/Allyn & Bacon. Boston

2. Geldard, D. & Geldard, K. (2012) Combining skills to facilitate the change process (Chapter 2 ) in Geldard, D. & Geldard, K (2012) Basic personal counselling: A training manual for counsellors (7th ed) Pearson Australia. Frenches Forrest.

3. Shulman, L. (2009) Skills in the work phase (Chapter 5) in Shulman, L. (2009) The skills of helping individuals, families, groups and communities. (6th ed) Brooks/Cole. Belmont.

Reading on Partnerships


1. Scott, Dorothy; Arney, Fiona (2010). Working with Vulnerable Families : A Partnership Approach. Retrieved from

2. Heanue, K & Lawton, C (2012) Social work pocketbooks: Working with substance users.Maidenhead: McGraw Hill Education. Retrieved from

Journal articles

Roose, R., Roets, G., Van Houte, S., Vandenhole, W., & Reynaert, D. (2013). From parental engagement to the engagement of social work services: Discussing reductionist and democratic forms of partnership with families. Child & Family Social Work, 18(4), 449-457. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2206.2012.00864.x

Module 2 (500 words)

Review the range of theories explored.

Crisis Intervention Task-Centred Practice Psychodynamic Approaches
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Community Development Critical Practice
Feminist Perspectives Anti-Discriminatory Practice Empowerment Practice
Motivational Interviewing Humanism & Existentialism Brief Solution-focused Therapy
Narrative Therapy Green Perspectives Post-modernism
Ecological Systems Theory Anti-Oppressive Practice Strengths Based Practice

Choose one (from Payne’s book)that appeals to you, reflecting on the factors that have shaped your choice and including a critical analysis of the theory.

Essential Readings (MUST ONLY be referenced from the sources mentioned below in APA 6th format with proper in text citations):


1. Payne, M. (2014) Part 2: Reviewing social work theories. In Modern Social Work Theory. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan

2. Connolly, M. (2007). Practice frameworks: Conceptual maps to guide interventions in child welfare. British Journal of Social Work37(5), 825-837.

3. Howe, D.(2009) A Brief Introduction to Social Work Theory UK: Palgrave MacMillan

4. Maidment, J., & Egan, R. (2016). Practice skills in social work and welfare: More than just common sense. Allen & Unwin.


Healy, K., & EBook Library. (2014). A dynamic model of practice (Chapter 2) in Healy, K. (2014) Social work theories in context : Creating frameworks for practice (2nd ed.).

Module 3 (500 words)

Listen to the recording of Erica’s reflections on the first meeting with the worker at the community centre (

Drawing on the information provided in the recording, critically examine how Anti-Oppressive Practice and Strengths Based Practice could inform your understanding of Erica’s situation and your approach to working with this client and her family.

Essential Readings (MUST ONLY be referenced from the sources mentioned below in APA 6th format with proper in text citations):


Maidment, J., & Egan, R. (2016). (Eds.) (3rd ed.). Practice skills in social work and welfare: More than just common sense. Crows Nest, NSW: Allen and Unwin. (Chapter 2 Page 19-34)

E-readings & Online resources:

The Strengths Perspective

1. McCashen, W (2005) Processes and skills of the Strengths Approach (Chapter 4) – note this article is located in ereadings for SWK302

2. Pattoni, L (2012) Strengths based approaches for working with individuals: Insight 16. Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (IRSS). Retrieved from

3. Saleebey, D. (2006) The Strength perspective in social work practice. 7th Edition. Published Pearson – note this article is locate in ereadings for

4. Gray, Mel. (2011). Back to basics: A critique of the strengths perspective in social work. Families in Society: The Journal of Contemporary Social Services, 92(1), 5-11.DOI: 10.1606/1044-3894.4054

5. Guo, W., & Tsui, M. (2010). From resilience to resistance: A reconstruction of the strengths perspective in social work practice. International Social Work, 53(2), 233-245 DOI: 10.1177/0020872809355391

6. Mirick, R. (2013). An Unsuccessful Partnership: Behavioral Compliance and Strengths-Based Child Welfare Practice. Families in Society, 94(4), 227-234. DOI: 10.1606/1044-3894.4323

Anti Oppressive Practice

1. Dalrymple, J. & Burke, B. (2006) Anti-oppressive Practice: Social care and the law (2nd ed) McGraw-Hill Education CDU Catelogue (E-book)

2. Dominelli, L. (2009) People who misuse substances : addictions or responses to difficult life circumstances and relationships? (Chapter 7) Dominelli, L. (2009). Introducing social work Cambridge, UK ; Malden, MA: Polity.

3. Raineri, M., & Calcaterra, V. (2018). Social work strategies against crisis in everyday practice: An anti-oppressive case study. International Social Work, 61(1), 130-142. DOI: 10.1177/0020872815606793

4. Wendt, S & Seymour, S (2009) Applying Post-structuralist ideas to empowerment: Implications for social work education. Social Work Education: The International Journal 29 (6) pp. 670-682, DOI: 10.1080/02615470903342093

Module 4 (500 words)

You have now seen Erica on 3 occasions. She tells you her cultural background is Aboriginal. She begins to open up about the problems in her relationship with Jim, and her worries about the impact of this on her children. Erica explains that Jemima is from a previous relationship and that her previous partner was very violent towards her so she left him when Jemima was around 3 years of age and they have not had contact with him at all in the past six years. Erica is worried because she can see signs that Jim is becoming increasingly angry and frustrated with her.

Erica describes Jemima as a sensitive child. Erica also tells you that Jim is very harsh on Jemima, yelling at her often, sending her to her room and seems to favour Isaac. Erica has spoken to Jim about this, but he always responds by telling her she is ‘crazy’ and that Jemima needs to ‘grow up’. Erica tells you that Jemima has recently become very withdrawn.

Respond to the following questions:

· How could you use attachment theory and trauma informed practice to understand Jemima’s circumstances this case?

· Would there be any need for risk assessment in this situation? Why or why not?

· What specialist skills and knowledge would you need to work directly with Jemima?

Essential Readings (MUST ONLY be referenced from the sources mentioned below in APA 6th format with proper in text citations):


Maidment, J., & Egan, R. (2016). (Eds.) (3rd ed.). Practice skills in social work and welfare: More than just common sense. Crows Nest, NSW: Allen and Unwin. (pp 147 – 195)


Chapter 10: Assessment

Chapter 11: Critically Examining the Process of Risk Assessment

Chapter 12: Collaborative Assessment from a Cross Cultural Perspective


Howe, D. (2011) Attachment across the lifecourse. A brief introduction. Published Palgrave Macmillian

Journal Articles

1. Keller, H. (2013). Attachment and culture. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 44(2), 175-194. doi:10.1177/0022022112472253

2. Ryan, F (2011) Kanyininpa (Holding): A way of nurturing children in Aboriginal Australia. Australian Social Work, 64:2, 183-197.

3. Arvidson, J., Kinniburgh, K., Howard, K. et al. (2011) Treatment of complex trauma in young children: Developmental and cultural considerations in application of the ARC intervention model. Journal of Child and Adolescent Trauma. 4: 34.

4. Knight, C. (2015). Trauma-Informed Social Work Practice: Practice Considerations and Challenges. Clinical Social Work Journal, 43(1), 25-37. DOI: 10.1007/s10615-014-0481-6

Module 5 (500 words)

Consider everything you have learnt about Erica and her family to date. Critically examine how systems/ecological approaches be applied to understand the circumstances of Erica and her family. How could these theories guide your practice in this case?

Essential Readings (MUST ONLY be referenced from the sources mentioned below in APA 6th format with proper in text citations):


Payne, M (2014) Modern Social Work Theory Palgrave MacMillan

Chapter 7 ‘Systems and Ecological Perspectives’ (Page 184-211)


1. Connolly, M., & Harms, L. (2015). Systems theories (Chapter 3), Connolly, M. & Harms, L. (2015) Social work: From theory to practice (Second ed.). Cambridge ; Port Melbourne, vic.: Cambridge university press.

2. Howe, D. (2009) Systemic and ecological approaches (Chapter 14). A brief introduction to social work theory. Basingstoke. England

3. Johnson, J & Grant, G. (2007) A multi-systemic approach to practice (Chapter 1) – Note this is located in e-readings for SWK302

4. Roberts, J., Abu-Baker, K., Diez Fernández, C., Chong Garcia, N., Fredman, G., Kamya, H., … Zevallos Vega, R. (2014). Up Close: Family Therapy Challenges and Innovations Around the World. Family Process, 53(3), 544-576DOI:10.1111/famp.12093

5. Tudge, J., Mokrova, I., Hatfield, B., & Karnik, R. (2009). Uses and Misuses of Bronfenbrenner’s Bioecological Theory of Human Development. Journal of Family Theory & Review, 1(4), 198-210.