Community development is part and parcel of the process of improving communities through the guidance of professional ethos in social justice. It is important to consider and evaluate the manner in which different people serve their community their training and the manner in which they have been engaging public services for the benefit of society. Social justice is part of human interaction and as such, must be used to identify the challenges and the strong points in any community development efforts. Community development serves in different areas such as health, education and legal awareness of the various realities that are presented in real life today. The importance of community development cannot be discussed in the absence of those who contribute to the efficacy of the projects. Community workers are an important part of community service that must be evaluated in line with the projects that are being contacted. This paper will discuss the role of community workers in community projects and ensure to also discuss the core values of community workers in the execution of their services. In addition, the paper will discuss the professional discipline and community service for this project. Mental health issues in Australia have various ramifications in Australia. While there are concerns about the need for educating the public on how to deal with mental health situations, professional and communities must also be given this information so as to understand the needs, challenges and the demand for change in community service. Community service includes education, counselling, treatment, and care in engaging people in the change that must be achieved in a particular community.
The Role of Community Workers
A community worker is an individual who has chosen to carry out the duties of community work in a particular area of interest. In many jurisdictions, social justice is the main objective that pushes community workers to work on the cases that they work on a day to day basis. Community work is not specifically defined to be one area of specialization. There are different forms of community work that one must understand if at all, they are interested in community work. It is important to be dynamic because there are various changes in the environment that necessitate the intervention of community workers. The different areas of concern when it comes to community work are; community health, public affairs and leadership in the community, the presence of an effect of drugs in an area, sensitization of the community about the possibility of new information or phenomena (Scott et al, 2018). More often than not, communities have to deal with different areas of concern such as criminal gangs uprising, the cost of living in the country and community, the effect of drugs on youth and the contribution of education in understanding the type of leadership the community needs.
From the overview of what community service entails, it is important to consider the role of community workers in the projects they undertake in the community. The first role of a community worker is to act as an agent of the government or organization that will disseminate relevant information about a given issue in society. In this sense, community workers are entrusted by the public bodies to bring different types of information to the public. For instance, an issue such as drug abuse is rampant in almost every urban society in the country. The role of a community worker in a project to fight the influence of drugs in the country is to research on the drugs being used and/or abused in the community, simplifying the information into classes that the public can easily understand and providing this information to the target group. In most instances, community workers will undergo training on the specific type of information they should share and how they are expected to share that information with the community.
Another role that community workers are managing care transitions between different phases of life in the target audience. Community workers respond to certain types of challenges that communities face at given times. In the case of drug abuse, it is important that the community worker tracks the progress of a case right from when it is reported to its final conclusion. Serving as managers’ link the community worker to the various institutions or organizations of help that members in the community may need. It is also important to consider the progress of individual cases to give a report on the changes that have been effected in society. It helps the public health sector to identify the cocoon in a particular issue and be able to plan well on how the issue will be countered in the long run.
Core values of community workers
A community worker must espouse different values that will help them in the conduct of their duties. It is important that the community worker undergoes the right treatment to understand the various issues they are dealing with to give influence to future prospects as planned by the appropriate office. First, a community worker must be committed to the service they are seeking to provide to the community they are serving (Covert, Sherman, Miner & Lichtveld, 2019). With commitment, a community worker will not look at the monetary benefits of the community service they are providing. If the focus is on the monetary gains, the community worker will find themselves missing important appointments and work due to lack of logistical backing. Community work may sometimes require the individual to travel from place to place educating the public on the effects of drug abuse. If the sponsor organization does not provide the necessary transportation, the community worker will be required to support themselves through the process. An individual without the necessary support and commitment will thus not be able to achieve much in community service provision.
Secondly, community workers must be open to different ideologies and learning. They must possess excellent people skills and be caring towards those who they are going to serve in the different communities that they are working in. For example, community health workers dealing with patients affected by chronic diseases. The community worker must show empathy to those they are working with. It is required that the community worker also avoids instances where they sympathize with the patients for it is the only way through which the patients will be encouraged. In the example of those affected by illegal drugs, the community worker must identify the point of unison between them and the victim to be able to guide and counsel the patient into recovery. Being open means being receptive to new ideas. In the training modules, the community worker must showcase their skills in listening and understanding. Being a good listener and contributor helps in identification of the necessary challenges that need to be addressed.
Lastly, the community worker must be qualified in the area of expertise they are working on. A qualified person will easily be ready to absorb information on the circulation of a new drug, its effect, and target audience and how the drug might be countered in professional practice. If a community worker is dealing with a drug-related project, the member must have attended training in the specific field of practice and possess the adequate knowledge that a professional is required to have. In addition, the community worker must be sociable. In most instances, community health workers are required to deal with large groups of people at a particular time. It is important for the person to develop people skills and communication for them to be able to execute their work with the vivacity required. Through a dedicated personality, a community worker must be able to also collaborate with members from different professional backgrounds that will enable the person to engage positively with others.
Professional discipline and community area
The professional discipline for the paper is counselling. A person qualified to provide guidance and counselling sessions to members of the community affected by different issues is called a counsellor. A counselor is required to undergo tertiary training in the areas of psychology and the specific field in which they are required to practice. Counselling is a profession practiced by those who want to help other members of the society to become better versions of themselves through transforming their behavior and conduct in the process (Kaplan, Tarvydas & Gladding, 2014). A counselor is generally a trained psychologist whose main concern is understanding why certain behavior is rampant within a particular community. A counsellor will thus be willing to handle any social problem that is presented in the community by a member. In most instances, counsellors are consulted based on the advice of community leaders and those in charge. For instance, parents are required to identify the challenges their teenage children are going through and be able to ascertain if the children need professional counselling. In community service, a counselor will be consulted by a government department to work hand in hand with other professionals in addressing current problems in society.
The relation of the community sector to the manner in which counsellors are involved relates to the challenges in the particular community. For instance, it is possible to have a counsellor in a health facility whose regular patients are dealing with addiction and mental health issues (Javanparast, Windle, Freeman & Baum, 2018). Such a facility will require the presence of a counselor because of the fact that mental health issues must be observed and attended to as they progress. Mental health issues might also be caused by drugs and as such, the counselor will be responsible for guiding the individual through the process of recovering from addiction.
A community area can be classified as a block or area of focus for the community service. Community development workers are assigned duties based on the administrative boundaries that have been put in place by the government. For instance, a community area of focus for the assignment may be residential are in a city (Levecque et al, 2017). In the example of Adelaide city, the community area might be taken to be the low-income neighborhood in the area. Identification of a specific problem in the area such as drug abuse must be understood to bring credence to the manner in which it is involved. A community is will often have a group or groups of individuals who are related because of various factors. In the community area faced with the drugs problem, it is important to consider engaging the whole community to achieve change. The relationship of counsellors to low-income areas is twofold. First, the community needs counselors because a number of those affected by drugs are trying to recover and thus need community counselors to help them through the journey. On the other hand, counselors, in their nature like to handle cases that bring positivity to their practice. It is for this reason that the classification of community areas is important.
Community development project
The National Community-Managed Mental Health Sector Organisations Outcome Measurement Project. The project involves a collaboration between CMHA and the Australian Mental Health Outcomes and Classification Network (AMHOCN). The focus of the project is on the manner in which outcome measures are used in mental health-related issues in the communities across Australia. Mental Health issues have been increasingly reported in the country. Traditionally, it was not possible to engage in mental health issues due to the controversial nature of mental health. The project takes in results from different places to discuss how various factors are identified in mental health. The importance of community health provision is to ensure that the society is equipped with adequate knowledge on how the issues of mental health are addressed and how such issues play a role in the development of Australian communities. The results and objectives of the project are the provisions of a guidebook that will help give recommendations on the necessary tools to use while implementing mental health interventions in the communities.
Indeed, mental health issues in Australia have received increased attention in the past. The bad history is informed by a lack of awareness in the community on how to treat and relate with an individual faced by mental health issues. The objective of the project is to provide guidance in the necessary organizations where the uniform practice is undertaken in all communities across Australia (“Implementing Routine Outcome Measurement in Community Managed Organisations | AMHOCN – Australian Mental Health Outcomes and Classification Network”, 2019). The guidebook is a comprehensive solution manual that looks at various forms of mental health in Australia, how it affects different individuals and how these individuals are required to have the necessary skills for development. For instance, organizations had not organized manual on how to engage members with mental health issues. Through the manual, it is important to note that organizations can now measure outcomes of mental health issues across Australia using the same model. Having a similar model creates uniformity in medical and counselling practice in the area and how it is evaluated through the various methods of engagement.
Counseling is an important process in the project in all communities across Australia. For instance, the challenges faced by organizations in Sidney may be different from those in Adelaide. However, there are some similarities that may be combined to have an effect on the manner in which professional conduct their work. Counseling is part and parcel of the solution to mental health issues. If counsellors are able to receive training on how they are going to approach mental health patients in different settings in Australia, there will need to focus on the contribution of every member on the national discourse (Sue, Sue, Neville & Smith, 2019). Additionally, counseling mental health patients require the collaboration of different members from different professions. The approach and teamwork in measuring outcomes in Australia give credence to the manner of creating a new age of solving mental health issues. Engaging different types of measures and consultation has made it possible for the project to be conducted by counseling professionals across the country which has a bigger impact in reducing the problem.
Community development is a wide field of study that encompasses different facets of professionalism. The paper’s focus on mental health and drug abuse among teenagers has discussed the role of community development workers in addressing the current problems in the community. To begin with, the community health report focused on the role of the community worker in the provision for their job. The role of a community development worker has been identified as being education, sensitization, care, and counselling. The community workers, as seen, do not operate on their own. The definition of community area has given credence to the discussion as it provides context as to why certain actions are taken in specific areas instead of others. Community workers also possess certain values through which they are able to execute their mandate in the community. In so being such values include; honesty, commitment, patience, and empathy. These values are instrumental in ensuring that the community worker does not discriminate on a matter based on the challenges that they are having. The values in identifying the professional intervention that the community development worker will engage in. the professional service chosen for community service was counseling. Through counseling, a community worker is able to interact with members suffering from mental health and drug problems to ensure that the recovery process is smooth. The partnership with the community gives professional across Australia the mandate to investigate and provide solutions for mental health issues without a problem.
Covert, H., Sherman, M., Miner, K., & Lichtveld, M. (2019). Core Competencies and a Workforce Framework for Community Health Workers: A Model for Advancing the Profession. American journal of public health, 109(2), 320-327.
Implementing Routine Outcome Measurement in Community Managed Organisations | AMHOCN – Australian Mental Health Outcomes and Classification Network. (2019). Retrieved from http://www.amhocn.org/publications/implementing-routine-outcome-measurement-community-managed-organisations
Javanparast, S., Windle, A., Freeman, T., & Baum, F. (2018). Community Health Worker Programs to Improve Healthcare Access and Equity: Are They Only Relevant to Low-and Middle-Income Countries?. International journal of health policy and management, 7(10), 943.
Kaplan, D. M., Tarvydas, V. M., & Gladding, S. T. (2014). 20/20: A vision for the future of counseling: The new consensus definition of counseling. Journal of Counseling & Development, 92(3), 366-372.
Levecque, K., Anseel, F., De Beuckelaer, A., Van der Heyden, J., & Gisle, L. (2017). Work organization and mental health problems in PhD students. Research Policy, 46(4), 868-879.
Scott, K., Beckham, S. W., Gross, M., Pariyo, G., Rao, K. D., Cometto, G., & Perry, H. B. (2018). What do we know about community-based health worker programs? A systematic review of existing reviews on community health workers. Human resources for health, 16(1), 39.
Sue, D. W., Sue, D., Neville, H. A., & Smith, L. (2019). Counseling the culturally diverse: Theory and practice. Wiley.