SSA is an institution where people wade into a maelstrom of challenges as a means to understand how problems start so they can define those problems and shape solutions.
Our bottom line is people. Whether we are delivering therapeutic services, writing a grant, developing a program or policy, assessing the needs of a community, advocating or testifying, launching a new enterprise, or teaching and conducting research, the end goal of all our work is to improve the lives of those most in need.
Payday lenders have come under attack from critics who complain that they prey upon the poor and mire them deeper in poverty. With annualized interest rates as high as 1,000 percent, the cost of a payday loan is high indeed.
Recent studies suggest that for many poor families housing remains a serious problem. Despite the economic recovery, the need for affordable housing still outstrips the demand. Eviction and homelessness are common, with several million families evicted each year.
Sometimes something as small as a letter can be one of the numerous keepsakes that trap people plagued by hoarding disorder, says Mary DeVan, AM ’72, who has a practice helping people with the problem.
When social workers speak up about what they see in the field, such as the struggles people have in qualifying for public housing, bureaucracy can be moved. The voices of social workers are particularly important now as nonprofit organizations rely on government funding today more than ever, and are assuming a more active role in the public-private collaborations they find themselves in as a result.