The time and place of the incident meant it was more difficult to address sensitively. I don’t feel I had enough strategies for coping with this situation, especially as we were on a minibus of 12 other young people and values are personal things one may not want to discuss in front of others. A later one to one mentoring session enable me understand what her values and beliefs were surrounding this topic and where they had stemmed from. This enabled me to see this part of her behaviour in a different light.
I did however still feel I needed to discuss with her the language that she was using and how it offended me. Therefore enabling her to understand my values too. Before embarking at the centre I had no real image of what to expect, as I had not worked in an organisation of this kind before. The group work and task centred learning theory that was applied enabled me to put theory to practice. I found this theory most useful when used as a combination. Because humans are different I found that by combining two theories I could modify my approach easier.
For example with those who appeared to learn more by doing I incorporated more task centred learning activities. I found the Cognitive Behavioural approach instrumental in helping me to help the young people build on what they already knew, examine their behaviour and develop their own strategies for coping. By leaving the power with the service user and allowing for their self-determination, this enabled me to re-enforce with the service users the need for them to take ownership of their behaviour. “The making of decisions for oneself without the influence or interference from others” Thomas and Pierson, 1995 (page 337)
Whilst on placement I feel I have learnt so many new ideas and ways in which to engage and communicate with a wide range of people. These skills will also be able to be transferred to use in my future endeavours as a social worker. These skills will also be able to be adapted to enable application to new tasks. Seeking The views of my service users about how they found the programme and any improvements they felt could be made for the next group of young people coming onto the programme was very useful in planning for the next programme. This session also allowed me to develop ideas about future intervention with young people in general.
Such as the kinds of services they would like to see in place for them or how we can build on and modify the service NACRO is providing at present. The meeting that took place at the end of the programme enabled us to develop and implement the ideas and wishes of the young people. This will hopefully lead to a service for young people developed by young people. The recent suggestion of running more groups for females in the near future was particularly important especially as NACRO researchers have identified that between 1993 and February 2001 the population of female prisoners had increased by 145%.
This recent report, which will be released 4th April 2001, will have a great impact on the importance of the developing these groups for youth activities and crime prevention work with females in the Wolverhampton area. This work will also educate society and challenge the traditional stereotypes that society has regarding men committing most crimes. I found the sessions where I discussed my value base quite uncomfortable at first particularly as I did not know my practice teacher as well as I usually would someone with whom I would explain my values in such depth.
This first hand experience was positive and it helped me to increase my understanding of how vulnerable my service users will feel when I am interviewing them and talking about intimate/personal matters, especially when they may not know me well. Feedback (from both my practice teacher and my supervisor) on all of the core competencies has been good. I feel my previous work experience both as a developmental delay therapist and acting co-ordinator at my previous place of employment has enabled me to utilise skills learnt there to my new endeavours. I plan to build upon these skills during my next placement.
References And Bibliography Banks. S, (1995) Ethics And Values In Social Work, British Association Of Social Work. Coulshed. V. And Orme. J (1998) Social Work Practice An Introduction, British Association For Social Workers. Thomas, M and Pierson, J. (1995) Dictionary Of Social Work, Collins Educational. Thompson. N, (1996) People Skills, A Guide To Effective Practice In The Human Services, Macmillan Press Thompson, N, (1991) Theory and practice in health and social welfare, Open University Press. Citing NACRO, http://www. nacro. org. uk/, “Women Behind Bars” Accessed March 2001.