|IT’S OFFICIAL .. (From right) Noriah, Gill looking on as Fatimah beating the gong to mark the official launching of the third Conference in Advancing Social Workers Series yesterday|
The proposed Social Worker Act is scheduled to go before the Malaysian Parliament in the next sitting which is on this forthcoming October this year.
Minister in Welfare, Women and Family Development Datuk Hajah Fatimah Abdullah disclosed that the legislation of the Social Worker Act had been completely drafted and currently in the processes of getting feedbacks from those who would be involved.
“Once, the feedbacks are collected, we would presented it to the relevant parties for it to be tabled in the next Parliamentary session this coming October,” said Fatimah who is also Dalat Assemblywomen.
“Although society, through various laws and social policies, entrust social workers such tasks, there has been little official recognition for training required to do these to a professional standard and with the new Social Act, this is about to change.”
“It is timely in our country’s development that we distinguished those who volunteer their efforts to help others and those who have a duty to all the ethics, knowledge base and skills of professional social work.”
“Working together and sharing with a wider public your expertise and empowering approach we can strengthen our services and achieve the caring society envisioned when the roadmap to a fully developed nation was drafted,” she added.
She said that she appreciates those who had been actively involved in drafting this legislation as it is very important it is that those who need the social workers’ service which have the assurance that it is delivered by competent social workers adhering to profession’s code of ethics.
Fatimah said this in a press conference after officiating the third Conference in Advancing Social Workers Series with this year’s theme “Improving Practice Competencies Through Education and Mentoring yesterday morning.
The two-day workshop was organized by Social Worker Program, Faculty of Social Science and Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS) comprises of several series of workshop and talks on the social working related matters was held at one of the leading hotels in the Kuching here.
Earlier in her opening speech, Fatimah said that helping others should be close to everyone’s heart particularly social workers, whose role by definition is to help others.
“Since I was given Ministerial responsibility for the Department of Welfare, I have realized how wide is that scope of a social work’s job in each of the employing agencies and how much depth is required when you are.”
“Daily, you face a range of taxing problems which need to be able to assessment and a strong adherence to your profession’s values so the uniqueness of each person is understood, respected and a way appropriate to that person’s culture and context is found to improve their situation.”
She pointed out that it’s not an easy job as for instance you need to able to assess the complex reasons behind child neglect and physical abuse whilst ensuring the child is not only protected but thrive.
“Then, there is the highly emotional area of child sexual abuse and the need to understand teenager who are troubled including young offenders, run-away and girl facing pregnancy without family support.”
“Having made the skilled assessment, social worker’s role is then to take action which helps those people have a better life and the same is true for other areas of your work, be it helping families and communities who are disadvantage or people facing illness.”
Fatimah reminded that the additional conditions needed to be a social worker is to be loving and caring; social concerns on what happened to people, communities around them and wanting to be some service to improve and situation, to make this world a better place for all.
“Ready, willing and determined to learn, and increase the capacity of self, knowledge, attitudes and skills to contribute to the development and well-being of society, she said adding that humility and humbleness, humility which is not proud or arrogant or feel yourself just right, showing off and so forth is also an important for a social worker.
Also present at the workshop launching were State Welfare Department Director Noriah Ahmad, Prof Mohd Fadzil Abdul Rahman representing UNIMAS Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Khairuddin Abdul Hamid, the Workshop’s Organizing Chairperson Gill Raja and President of Malaysia Association of Social Workers Teoh Ai Hua.