The stability of the family is important not only to family members, but to society as a whole. Strong, stable, and healthy families are proven to maintain communities with lower crime rates and higher standards of living. For this reason exists an extensive, multi-tiered network of social services systems, from the local level all the way to federal, and social work itself has many areas of specialization. Family service workers are professionals whose focus is on the family unit itself. In instances where the intervention of social services is desired or necessary, these are the individuals who work directly with families in order to educate, advise, and offer services which aid in stabilizing living situations.
The family service worker works with both families and their case managers to improve overall conditions of family life and determine which kinds of services or assistance may be necessary for them. This involves a variety of tasks, such as scheduling job interviews, enlisting legal representation, assisting in locating affordable housing, and scheduling visitation for instances of shared custody. They must also stay up-to-date with developments within the family and follow up as necessary.
Aspiring family social workers should be caring, personable individuals who have strong communication skills and the ability to understand the many issues which face families in order to help them adjust and cope with these realities. An associate's degree in human services may be a minimum requirement for this position, though some employers may prefer those with higher degrees and/or prior social work experience.
Family Service Worker Tasks
Assist in educating parents in behavior and life skills, individual and group classes.
Assess quality of care by visiting home and residential sites.
Act as a liaison with parents and treatment professionals.
Manage caseload and follow-up care.