Many different problems may occur to families regardless of size, location, or situation, and a network of social services exists to give these families assistance. The family support worker is the contact between these families and organizations. They communicate with the family, learning about their situation and helping them find potential solutions. They are also in charge of following up with the family over a period of time to make sure that the problems are adequately taken care of and devising alternatives for where they are not. These services vary greatly, from child protection services to drug abuse rehabilitation to food and nutrition assistance to employment assistance. The family support worker should provide a caring attitude and show an investment in their issues. In addition, the family support worker should have a thorough knowledge of the specific services offered and have good attention to detail so that records may be properly kept and maintained.
A bachelor's degree (or certification) in social work is generally the minimum educational requirement for this position, with extra emphasis in youth services, drug rehabilitation, mental healthcare, or another field required for positions specializing in these areas. Previous experience in a similar position is also needed as well. To be effective as a family support worker, the prospective applicant should be capable of communicating effectively with a wide variety of individuals.
Family Support 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.