How Social Workers Are Empowering Vulnerable People across the World; THE PROFESSIONALS
WHEREVER we live in the world people are being harmed, abused and neglected and their civil, political, economic, cultural and social rights are being violated.
Every day social workers are helping individuals and groups of people in such situations to live better lives.
World Social Work Day 2010 (March 16), gave us an opportunity to celebrate the contribution social work makes to communities across the world.
To mark this event, ADSS Cymru asked a number of international social workers to tell us why they decided to practise in Wales, what value they place on their work and their views on the perception of social work in Wales.
Silvia Vidrean-Cioaza is a social worker with the child care team at Pembrokeshire Council.
She said: "I started to work as a qualified social worker in Romania in September 1995.
"At that time, Romania was establishing new child care departments within all Romanian councils.
"To ensure newly qualified social workers were able to acquire the practical skills needed for the direct work with vulnerable children and families, each council brought in the support of two highly experienced UK social workers as supervisors and training providers.
"I was lucky enough to work very closely with the British supervisors, and wanted to come and see social work in practice in the UK.
"In 2004 I got a job with the child care department in Pembrokeshire, where I have worked for over five years.
"The public image of social work in Romania is mainly a positive one. Social workers are regarded as professionals, who are very active offering advice, support and protection, helping children, families and communities overcome difficult situations to make positive changes to their lives.
"The social worker's image in the UK is totally different. Social workers are mainly seen by the general public as professionals who take children away and control peoples' lives.
"This view is ignorant to the real day-to-day hard work undertaken by social workers, who do make a difference for struggling parents and vulnerable children. …