Clinical Intervention with Socially Vulnerable Clients

Course Number: 

Social workers are committed to social justice and to helping the most vulnerable members of society, but have often found traditional methods unsuccessful with this population. Although many of these clients carry a significant psychological burden derived from the internalization of oppressive experience, clinical response is frequently limited to concrete services and problem-solving tasks. Successful engagement of socially vulnerable clients in therapeutic intervention requires an integrated approach that addresses individual dynamic issues and environmental concerns simultaneously. This course presents the conceptual framework for such an approach, including consideration of clinical implications for policy design. Specific techniques that enhance effectiveness-such as multilevel assessment, the therapeutic use of metaphor, and practical action-oriented methods- are discussed in detail.