Discussion: working with community systems

  Addressing community issues at the systems level requires advanced human services professional practitioners to use a holistic approach. For instance, in the aftermath of a disaster, practitioners must coordinate with many different stakeholders, both inside and outside of the community (e.g., federal agencies) to improve and implement policies and initiatives that meet the needs of adversely affected populations within the community. Working at the systems level allows practitioners to go beyond helping individual service users to making large-scale improvements that can help many people at once while preparing for disasters in the future.  

To Prepare

  • Consider how advanced human services professional practitioners can effect change at the macro level to help marginalized populations.
  • Pay particular attention to the resources, organizations, and policies that may aid in disaster response and recovery. In addition, think about specific initiatives that could be implemented in the community to secure resources, rebuild, and recover.
  • Reflect on the natural disaster and the human services organization you discussed last week. Identify specific resources, organizations, and systems you would rely on and/or partner with to provide the most ethical services to the broadest number of culturally diverse members of the community. Use the NOHS code of ethics to guide your thinking.
  • Consider what initiatives you would implement to systematically help the community as a whole.
  • Find one article from an academically appropriate source that focuses on cross-agency collaboration in the aftermath of a disaster.

Post a brief description of the natural disaster and human services organization you discussed last week. Again, assume you are a supervisor in the organization. Describe the resources, organizations, and systems you would rely on and/or partner with to provide the most ethical services to the broadest number of culturally diverse members of the community. Explain why you would rely on and/or partner with each. Then, describe what initiatives you would implement to systematically help the community as a whole and explain why. Be specific. 

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