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Monday, August 19, 2013

August 19 Is World Humanitarian Day

In recognition of World Humanitarian Day, I'm taking a moment to reflect on what it is that embodies humanitarianism.

Traits that often come to mind include: selflessness, a sense of justice and equanimity for all persons, willingness to sacrifice for a particular cause, a desire to help others achieve success.

Sometimes when I think about it, its easy to become a little cynical and question whether anyone who seems selfless is truly not out for some sort of personal gain too. In the media, we often hear about celebrities such as Bono, Oprah, Princess Diana, and Angelina Jolie who stand (or have stood) behind various causes and use their celebrity status as a forum to promote awareness and such for their cause. Yet in a way, I also feel that if a person is going to live a life of fame and fortune, it means something if they dedicate a part of their lives to a purpose that goes beyond languishing in luxury.

There's also those who have become famous (or perhaps even infamous) because of their efforts. People like Martin Luther King Jr, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, or Oskar Schindler come to mind. I feel that those in this category are the ones who in essence, became their cause...they lived their lives in an effort to better the world, or their corner of it at least. They did not seek fame or riches or reward. They saw, or many times witnessed firsthand, an injustice and decided to do something about it.

I have my own causes and social issues I feel are important as I'm sure many of us do. I support them as I am able and do my little part to raise awareness. It may not be much, but it is a start. The point is, I am a big believer that at least part of our purpose on this earth is to leave it a little better than we found it. We've all seen ways injustice and/or ignorance is able to permeate society and draw a dividing line between groups of people.

What are some causes/issues that are meaningful or perhaps even personal to you?  What do we need more of in order to see these causes through? How might you use what you learn and live on your daily path to become a humanitarian in your own part of the world? 

Saturday, February 23, 2013

I Would Think We'd Be Higher

Number 9!!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Discoveries Of The Week

Things learned, accomplished and discovered this week...

Blog Discovery: How Not To Do Social Work  --I love the honesty and earnest insights into the profession shared here.

New-to-me-Etsy Shop: RossLab.  Whimsical, simple ceramics.  Because there can never be enough bowls and cups!

Activism task: I signed a petition to President Obama asking him to leave social security benefits alone.

Weekly treat: I enjoyed a week off from work...the last full week of vacation time I took was in October 2011! Of course, I fully absorbed a total state of doing-nothingness and may even have raised it to a whole new level.

Social work resources:  New search engine providing valuable info on local and federal U.S. programs for housing, employment, food and health for those in need.  It also gives users the ability to add resources.  And the website, Promised Land, has some awesome ideas and tools on how to become a changemaker in your community. 

Moment of suckage:  Watching the movie "Twilight: Breaking Dawn".  I have no adequate words to describe the pointlessness involved in this series, and furthermore, no rational explanation as to why I actually watch the movies.

Question of the week: Why are there so few resources such as social work blogs and/or helpful online resources (e.g. U.K Social Care Network | The Guardian) established by American social workers?

Friday, February 1, 2013

Social Workers Tweet

What Social Workers Are Talking About On Twitter This Week

Social Work Digest

This week's news and announcements in the world of social work.

  • "We're getting back to good old-fashioned social work". Department of Human Service social workers in Michigan moving into elementary and high schools.
  • New Jersey social service workers unhappy as case loads increase but staffing levels remain stagnant. 
  • Over 3,000 front line social service workers in British Columbia walk off their jobs in effort to receive higher wages.  “We do realize this is a fight we’re having with the government,” says social services bargaining committee chairperson.
  • Finally! Someone explains "what is social work". Spoiler alert: Not all social workers work in schools or for child protection agencies.
  • I like this U.K.  model for attracting and retaining social workers.  Adequate supports and ongoing opportunities for advancement and trainings are key.
  • Need for social workers growing; Northwest Nazarene University in Idaho planning to offer new social work program. 
    Jan Roeser, regional economist for the Idaho Department of Labor, said careers related to social work and two other degree programs NNU plans to offer in Twin Falls are projected to show a lot of growth.  The number of new jobs is expected to increase by 20 to 35 percent this decade. The professions also have high wages. {via Times News |
    My note: Not  so sure about the 'high wages' part though!


Thursday, January 31, 2013

Culture of caffeination

Words of Wisdom

Never permit a dichotomy to rule your life, a dichotomy in which you hate what you do so you can have pleasure in your spare time. Look for a situation in which your work will give you as much happiness as your spare time."  ~Pablo Picasso