Online Connections for Professional Learning

Images of twelve diverse faces connected by lines, showing a network

Image by Jurgen Appelo on Flickr (https://www.flickr.com/photos/jurgenappelo/679725279), shared under Creative Commons Attribution license https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ 

I’m often asked how I stay current on new developments and trends that affect our profession. I use multiple strategies, but my most robust strategy is the professional/personal learning network (PLN) that I’ve developed online. Simply stated, PLNs employ, within an online environment, the same strategy that professionals have used for centuries: connect to people who share interests and with whom you can share useful information. Only now, these people could be in my city or on the other side of the world. The advantage of an online PLN is that it you can access it almost anytime, and it draws from a variety of sources: blogs, e-letters, interest communities (e.g., Facebook or LinkedIn groups, Google+ communities, Twitter chats), listservs, and various other social media platforms.

A true story from a UB colleague, Dr. Phillip Glick, illustrates the power of PLNs. One of his medical residents contacted him in the middle of the night, concerned about a child’s non-response to emergency treatment. Seeking to advise the resident on what might help, Dr. Glick immediately searched Medline, an online database of biomedical articles, but he was unable to find anything useful.  Next, Dr. Glick reached out to his Twitter network (using general statements, so as to not disclose protected health information). A few hours later, he had a suggestion from a doctor in Sweden who was writing up a series of similar cases – that suggestion saved the child’s life. What’s important to highlight is that Dr. Glick had already done the work, prior to the crisis, to build a trusted, professional learning network on that social media platform. How lucky for that child and family that they had a physician who was globally-connected.

Beyond staying abreast of new developments and providing opportunities for consultation, PLNs can open up opportunities for collaboration; for example, I’m writing a book with two social work academic colleagues who are part of my PLN – I met and came to know them well through social work conversations on Twitter and the Google+ Social Work and Technology Community.

You usually will see PLNs described as Personal Learning Networks. The term comes from the educational technology learning communities and has its origins in Connectivism, a learning theory developed by George Siemens to fit the network-based learning that occurs in the digital age. However, in social work the word “personal” can raise some concerns for clinical social workers who are especially sensitive to the need to keep boundaries between their personal and professional personas. For this reason, when I first introduce PLNs I use the word Professional, not Personal, and then later then I explain the origins and more general use of the term Personal in this context.

Want to learn more about PLNs? Some resources are listed below. However, honestly, it’s hard to understand them from just reading about them – the best way to learn is to get started, observe what others are doing, and then to reach out to others with questions and comments.

Resources on PLNs

Crowley, B. (2014, December 31). 3 Steps for Building a Professional Learning Network – Education Week. Teacher. Retrieved from http://www.edweek.org/tm/articles/2014/12/31/3-steps-for-building-a-professional-learning.html

A good introduction to PLNs. While it’s targeted at teachers, it conveys the general strategy very well. The post also includes some excellent advice around not overwhelming yourself in the process of doing this.

Graffin, M. (n.d.). Step 1: What is a PLN? – Teacher Challenges. Retrieved July 28, 2016, from https://teacherchallenge.edublogs.org/pln-challenge-1-what-the-heck-is-a-pln/

A good overview of PLNs that was created for teachers; it includes helpful graphics and videos. Pay special attention to the right sidebar menu, because there are links to many other posts that will be helpful to someone who wants to develop a PLN.

Hitchcock, L. (2015, July 1). Personal Learning Networks for Social Workers. Retrieved from http://www.laureliversonhitchcock.org/2015/07/01/personal-learning-networks-for-social-workers/

A great introduction to the topic for social workers. She suggests some starting places, and shares links to good resources, including an introductory video that we developed here at the University at Buffalo School of Social Work.

Kanter, B. (2012, January 26). Peeragogy: Self Organized Peer Learning in Networks | Beth’s Blog. Retrieved July 29, 2016, from http://www.bethkanter.org/peeragogy/

A more advanced read for people who like to glimpse the “big picture,” in this case, higher level peer-to-peer learning projects. Mentioned here is the work of Howard Rheingold,  the man who is credited with first coining the term “virtual community.”

Michaeli, D. (2015, November 15). Personal Learning Network Twitter Cheat Sheet. Retrieved July 29, 2016, from http://www.socialwork.career/2015/11/personal-learning-network-twitter-cheat-sheet.html

A focused, how-to guide for social workers to using Twitter to develop a PLN. Presents a great visual overview through an infographic (i.e., visual display of information).

Richardson, W., & Mancabelli, R. (2012). Personal Learning Networks: Using the Power of Connections to Transform Education (3rd edition). Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree Press.

Although this is a book targeting educators, it is an excellent overview of networked learning, and the need for all schools to move to this new learning model. The authors start by focusing on the need for teachers to develop their own PLNs and to become networked learners, before they can move this model into their classrooms. Most of the book then focuses on developing networked classrooms and schools, including policy issues that come into play.

Note: some of the content from this article appeared in the dean’s column in the Fall 2016 issue of Mosaics, the magazine of the University at Buffalo School of Social Work, on page 3.

Nancy J. Smyth is the Dean of the School of Social Work, University at Buffalo, State University of New York.

PREP SCHOOL NEGRO: Periscope of the discussion on Race, Racism and Leveraging Technology for Social Justice

Post by Pat Shelly

Periscope by Nancy J. Smyth

 

flyer-prep-school-negro

 

 

 

Thirty years before our current election cycle’s talk about racial disparities, killings streamed on Facebook and the rise of the #Occupy and #Blacklivesmatter movement, a young Black man was offered an opportunity for what he hoped was a better life.  André Robert Lee’s full scholarship to attend a Philadelphia prep school was supposed to be his way out of the ghetto, but this elite education came at a high personal cost.

 

Prep School Negro documents André’s journey back in time to revisit the events of his adolescence while also spending time with present-day prep school students of color and their classmates to see how much has really changed inside the ivory tower. What he discovers along the way is the poignant and unapologetic truth about who really pays the consequences for yesterday’s accelerated desegregation and today’s racial naiveté.

 

A screening of Prep School Negro was held on September 19, 2016 as part of the University at Buffalo’s School of Social Work series on Social Work and Emerging Technologies, led by affiliated faculty member Mike Langlois, a clinical social worker and educator.  After the screening, Mike engaged André Lee, the director of Prep School Negro and producer, civil rights educator and activist, in a discussion on race, racism, the seismic shifts in technology and how to leverage emerging technologies in the fight for social justice.

 

André Robert Lee, filmmaker

André Robert Lee, filmmaker

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mike Langlois, LICSW

Mike Langlois, LICSW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Full-length version of Prep School Negro is now available on PBS
(through Feb. 10, 2017):
http://www.pbs.org/video/2365172448/

 

Here are links to the Periscope recordings:

 

We welcome any comments, and will pass any received along to André and Mike.

Cultural Humility: A Lesson Plan for Social Work

By Sarah Richards-Desai, MSW

 

The UB School of Social Work has developed a new resource to assist students, faculty, and practitioners in their understanding of cultural humility. Conversations about Culture: Video and Lesson Plan  introduces students, practitioners, and the public to the concept of cultural humility. This module includes a 12-minute video, containing interviews and content designed to raise questions and introduce the concept of cultural humility in social work. There are additional resources, a lesson plan, and some possible activities to try on your own or in a classroom setting.

Video for the UBSSW Cultural Humility module

Video for the UBSSW Cultural Humility module

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After Orlando / #PulseOrlando: #MacroSW Chat – Open Mic 06-23-16

This mass shooting reveals some of the most complex social problems of our era: homophobia, racism, hate crimes and gun violence.

(The edited version is by Pat Shelly, who was using the handle @officialmacrosw for this chat.)

In the wake of the Orlando shooting (we will use #PulseOrlando as our hashtag for this chat), we feel heartache, sadness and anger. We may be left wondering why this happened and how we can prevent…

a memorial black ribbon has rainbow stripes in th ellop and Pulse nightclub logo on one edn witha pink heart around the logo

credit: kyliesoniquelove

 

 

Source: After Orlando / #PulseOrlando: #MacroSW Chat – Open Mic 06-23-16

#MacroSW chat 4-14-16: Smart Decarceration and Social Work

An important issue for the U.S. and our profession. How can we implement the best practices for effective reentry for the millions currently incarcerated, many under racist drug laws?

Here is a link to the summary of this chat.

And below, the resources and references that were shared regarding Smart Decarceration:

Sources (in the original post)

Here is a link to the Grand Challenge, Promote Smart Decarceration – at this link, click on the cover of the AASWSW Grand Challenges paper, “From Mass Incarceration to Smart Decarceration” to download a copy.

Links for the report’s authors:
Dr. Carrie Pettus-Davis bio
Assistant Professor and Director, Concordance Institute for Advancing Social Justice, George Warren Brown School of Social Work, Washington University in St. Louis

Matthew W. Epperson bio
Assistant Professor, School of Social Service Administration, The University of Chicago

Related articles:

Breaking the cycle of drug use

Alternatives to incarceration

Additional Resources on Smart Decarceration (tweeted during chat on 4-14-16)

Michelle Alexander on The New Jim Crow (Bill Moyers interviews Alexander in 2010): https://vimeo.com/40261507

The New Jim Crow in the 02-19-13 article by John Light  http://billmoyers.com/2013/02/19/mass-incarceration-and-the-new-jim-crow/

Prison Policy Initiative http://www.prisonpolicy.org
Winnable criminal justice reforms: A Prison Policy Initiative briefing on promising state reform issues for 2016
Link to download this report::
http://www.prisonpolicy.org/searchresults.html?cx=015684313971992382479%3Aa3be84yykbq&cof=FORID%3A11&q=winnable

Prisons for Profit article:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2015/04/28/how-for-profit-prisons-have-become-the-biggest-lobby-no-one-is-talking-about/

Video: War on Drugs & Mass Incarceration “The House I Live In” http://www.thehouseilivein.org/

Transgender People in Prison Article
Prison is horrifying for transgender people. It’s hell.
http://www.vox.com/2016/4/11/11355702/prison-transgender

Combatting Mass Incarceration ACLU infographic (2011)
https://www.aclu.org/infographic-combating-mass-incarceration-facts

6,000 drug offenders to be released from federal prison starting Friday. (Oct. 2015)
http://www.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/la-na-prison-release-20151029-story.html

Blog post on Prison Reform by @StuckOnSocialWork:
THE Question When It comes to #justice and #prison #reform.
https://stuckonsocialwork.wordpress.com/2014/05/07/the-question-when-it-comes-to-justice-and-prison-reform/    also: https://stuckonsocialwork.wordpress.com/2015/03/05/empathy-not-expulsion-for-all-students/

Univ. of Chicago Smart Decarceration Initiative: Reversing Mass Incarceration in America http://ssascholars.uchicago.edu/smart-decarceration-initiative

Creating trauma-informed correctional care: a balance of goals and environment. Niki A. Miller and Lisa M. Najavits 2012
http://www.ejpt.net/index.php/ejpt/article/view/17246

Effective reentry:
4 Elements of Successful Reentry Programs for Inmates
http://www.socialsolutions.com/blog/4-elements-of-successful-reentry-programs-for-inmates/

Center for Employment Opportunities 2013 Annual Report
http://ceoworks.org/about/annual-reports/

Preventing Future Crime With Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
http://www.nij.gov/journals/265/pages/therapy.aspx

HIPAA compliant technology:
VSee – Word’s Largest VideoTelemedicine Platform for HIPAA compliant video visits.
https://vsee.com/     Dr. Joiner of Wayne State describes it: “VSee is a version of videoconferencing (we use it w/ our online students when holding synchronous meetings). VSee is a great tool to continue the conversation and 2 engage beyond the traditional classroom .”

Restorative Justice http://restorativejustice.org/

German Prison System: CBS 60 Minutes April 3 2016
Privacy, weekend leave, keys…This is prison?
Script: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/60-minutes-germany-prisons-crime-and-punishment/

Mental Health Courts
Judge Ginger Lerner-Wren http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ginger-lernerwren/the-top-five-lessons-from_b_8024440.html

 

On April 14 the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare (AASWSW) – @AASWSWorg and Pat Shelly – @UBSSW will co-host the #MacroSW Twitter Chat about smart decarceration, one of the Grand Challenges for Social Work.

smart decarceration report AASWSW

Smart decarceration is a response to failed mass incarceration and rehabilitation policies, which have contributed to the United States holding 25% of the global prison population.

smart decarceration image of prison walkway with cells bars
image: DUSTIN HOLMES | FLICKR

According to the White House, between 1988 and 2009, annual state corrections spending increased from $12 billion to $52 billion. Since 77% of prisoners are rearrested in within five years of release, implementing effective reentry models can dramatically improve outcomes.

What are the Grand Challenges of Social Work?

GRANDchallenges logo

Led by the AASWSW , the Grand Challenges for Social Work is a groundbreaking initiative to champion social progress powered by science. It is a call to action for social work researchers and…

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#SWmonth and What We’ve Been Up To! #MacroSW chat 3/24/16 at 9pm EDT

This will be a good chat!  This post is reblogged from #MacroSW: Where Macro Social Workers Come To Connect. Original post here

(Summary of this chat can be found here..)

logo for 2016 Social Work Month, with the hashtag #SWmonth and the phrase "March is Social Work Month"Join us as we ask, “What have you done for Social Work Month?” We want to hear all about the observances that you social workers made or have plans for during the last week of #SWmonth.

We’ll offer a few of our own activities to start out the chat – and we ask you to share those photos, articles or other resources that will provide inspiration for next year!

Host: Pat Shelly @UBSSW

  1. Why is March the month chosen for Scoial Work Month?
  2. What did you do for Social Work Month?
  3. Did your employer observe Social Work Month in any way, or your social work students?
  4. Can you share your best times / ideas / activities for Social Work Month?
  5. Have you received or given any signs of appreciation – verbal or otherwise – because it is prime time to #ThankASocialWorker?
  6. Any advice for a great 2017 SW Month?

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ACEs & Trauma-Informed Systems: Building Practices & Policies to Avoid Re-traumatization — Feb. 18, 2016

Reblogged from #MacroSW: Where Macro Social Workers Come to Connect

The #MacroSW Twitter Chat on February 18, 2016 (9:00pm EST) will be on expanding the reach of #TraumaInformed Care into the policy arena and through transforming our social work practices.

UPDATE: Chat archive now available!

by Pat Shelly

 

Hands cupping hands

 

All social workers and other professionals who work with people who have experienced trauma are at risk of being personally impacted by that trauma. Secondary traumatic stress (STS), vicarious trauma (VT) and re-traumatization are common among helping professionals. When we hear the term trauma-informed care we typically think about how to avoid re-traumatizing our clients.

 

But what about considering a trauma-informed approach to the systems in which we work?

On February 18, 2016, the #MacroSW chat will discuss systems-level change to avoid re-traumatizing not only our clients but ourselves as social workers, as staff and as nonprofit entities.

 

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The Age of #DigitalLiteracy and the Media Revolution

By Pat Shelly

 

Where do you get most of your news of the world?
What are skills needed for digital literacy?
Do you use social media for any part of your school or professional work?
Will universal digital literacy lead to world peace?

 

 

The Age of Digital Literacy is Now

 

The University at Buffalo observed the 2016 International Education Week with lectures, film, student events, exhibits and a keynote: “The Media Revolution: What it Means for You” by Geneva Overholser.

 

She has worked as an editor, ombudsperson, journalist at many top papers, including the New York Times and the Washington Post. She lived in and wrote from Paris and Kinshasa over a period of five years.

 

Overholser spoke of the radical change from traditional, or “legacy” media – newspapers, radio, network television, cable TV – to new media technologies. These include social networking, instant messaging, blogs (coined from “web” and “log”), internet video (YouTube), digital media sites (Vice, Vox, Gawker), radio podcasts, political news outlets (Politico, Democracy Now!), social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr). All are accessible from the palm of the hand through smart phones and other mobile devices.

 

The cost of such technology is becoming less and less expensive. One survey she cited found that Africa is leading the world in the rate of  adoption of mobile internet use.

 

Photo credit: Kainan Guo, The Spectrum

Photo credit: Kainan Guo, The Spectrum

Ms. Overholser spoke to the necessity of being literate in this new realm of media. “[N]ow, thanks to new technology, EVERYBODY owns a press.” We are our own reporter, editor, and publisher. “… thanks to social media, each of us has a limitless, unmediated space for communicating with one another.”
We both consume and contribute to this public space.

 

 

 

 

What’s in your diet?

Living in the digital age also means maintaining an healthy diet while consuming media, and avoiding too much of the media junk food. This diet comes from “countless numbers of sources – a cacophony of information that runs the gamut from useless to reliable, from base to inspiriting.” She warned that anything anonymous lacks accountability. Regulating one’s diet has another dimension: sometimes we need to refrain from consuming toxic elements.

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The big picture: Infographics for social work

by Pat Shelly

We’ve all heard the saying:

“A picture is worth a thousand words.”

splashes of paint in many colors erupting against a black background

image: TerrellCotton.com

Aristotle said, “The soul never thinks without a picture.”

Pictures can inform and inspire us.

One way to brighten and broaden the view of social work is through infographics.

An infographic is a visual representation of information or data. It combines data and design in a format that is easy to share and to understand.

Chart showing circles overlapping withthe elements of a good infographic: Data, Design, Story, Sharability

image: Daniel Zeevi – Dashburst

Given the role of technology and the internet in knowledge-production and dissemination, this educational tool is especially useful today.

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Trauma-Informed Care – Join the #MacroSW Chat

by Pat Shelly

Note: A summary of the chat can be found here
https://storify.com/UBSSW/trauma-informed-care-macrosw-twitter-chat-9-10-15

All the new resources mentioned in the chat summary can be found below the list of suggested readings at the end of this post.

What: Macro Social Work Twitter Chat
When: Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015  at 9pm ET / 6pm PT
Why: Knowledge of trauma and its impact, assessment and treatment are essential to the future of social work practice, and social work education.*
How: Follow #MacroSW  (see here for live twitter chat tips by our chat partner @LaurelHitchcock)

Photograph: Images.com/Corbis

Photograph: Images.com/Corbis

During this #MacroSW Chat, we will be focusing on Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) and Social Work.

September 10 is the eve of the 14th anniversary of 9-11, which resulted in trauma to a nation, a city, communities, families and individuals; 9-11  (see #NeverForget_911) joined #OklahomaCityBombing as synonyms for “acts of mass murder by terrorists.”

This is also #SuicidePrevention Week. Trauma is obviously part of what both suicide attempt-survivors and suicide loss-survivors experience.

It’s been 10 years since #HurricaneKatrina devastated New Orleans.

Current traumas in the news include the #refugee crisis in Europe, and the ongoing issues of racist violence in the U.S. as seen in #BlackLivesMatter #SayHerName #Ferguson #Charleston.

Please join us, with our guest experts from the Institute on Trauma and Trauma-Informed Care, @UBSSW professors Sue Green @UBittic and Tom Nochajski @ubthn.

We’ll want to hear about your experiences with trauma-informed care and thoughts on how this enriches our profession.
*Knowledge of trauma and its impact, assessment and treatment are essential to
the future of social work practice, and social work education.
Check back on September 11th, when a summary – including a list of references and resources – will be posted.

Questions for discussion:   1. What is trauma-informed care? /  2. How does trauma-informed care (TIC) fit into macro social work? / 3. Have you had any experiences with TIC? / 4. What is already happening around TIC in social work and in the macro areas? / 5. What special training is needed to become a social worker / agency / policy that is trauma-informed?

The links and resources that were mentioned in the chat can be found below this reading list

Suggested Reading: (an incomplete list – we welcome your comments and additions)

Bloom, S.L., Farragher, B., Restoring Sanctuary: A New Operating System for Trauma-Informed Organizations, (2013) New York: Oxford University Press

British Colombia Provincial Mental Health and Substance Use Planning Council. (2013, May). Trauma-Informed Practice Guide.

Carello, J. and Butler, L. (2014). Potentially Perilous Pedagogies: Teaching Trauma is not the Same as Trauma-Informed Teaching. In J. Trauma & Dissociation.  Retrieved from:   http://www.academia.edu/9331463/Potentially_Perilous_Pedagogies_Teaching_Trauma_Is_Not_the_Same_as_Trauma-Informed_Teaching

Fallot, R.D. and Harris, M. (2009) Creating Cultures of Trauma-Informed Care: A Self-Assessment and Planning Protocol
https://www.healthcare.uiowa.edu/icmh/documents/CCTICSelf-AssessmentandPlanningProtocol0709.pdf

Finkel, Ed. (2015). Problem-solving courts dig deep to acknowledge, and, sometimes, address trauma. ACEs Connection Network (April 16). http://www.acesconnection.com/blog/problem-solving-courts-dig-deep-to-acknowledge-and-sometimes-address-trauma

Harris, M. and Fallot, R.D., Eds. (2001). Using trauma theory to design service systems. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Kawam, E. (2015, Sept. 1). Trauma Informed Care and Social Work Education: A Case Study. Retrieved from:
http://www.socialjusticesolutions.org/2015/09/01/trauma-informed-care-ethics-social-work-education/

Kusmaul, N., Wilson, B., & Nochajski, T. (2015) The Infusion of Trauma-Informed Care in Organizations: The Experience of Agency Staff. Human Services Organizations Management, Leadership & Governance, Volume 39, Issue 1, January 2015, pages 25-37.
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/23303131.2014.968749#.VfG6LX2iNdw

Richardson, S.A. (2014) Awareness of Trauma-Informed Care. Social Work Today, July 2014
http://www.socialworktoday.com/archive/exc_012014.shtml

SAMHSA’s Concept of Trauma and Guidance for a Trauma-Informed Approach (2014, July). Retrieved from:
http://www.traumainformedcareproject.org/resources/SAMHSA%20TIC.pdf

SAMSHA. (2010). Creating a Trauma-Informed Criminal Justice System for Women: Why and How. Retrieved from:
http://www.traumainformedcareproject.org/resources/TIC%20criminal%20justice%20for%20women%20%282%29.pdf

SAMSHA. (2014, March). TIP 57: Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Services. Retrieved from:
http://www2.jbsinternational.com/kap/TIP-57.htm

Singer, J. B. (Producer). (2013, April 29). An Overview of Trauma-Informed Care: Interview with Nancy J. Smyth, Ph.D. [Episode 80]. Social Work Podcast [Audio Podcast]. Retrieved from http://www.socialworkpodcast.com/2013/04/an-overview-of-trauma-informed-care.html

University at Buffalo Institute on Trauma and Trauma-Informed Care (ITTIC) Resources on #Trauma, #TraumaInformed Care:
Trauma Talks at UB ITTIC
http://socialwork.buffalo.edu/social-research/institutes-centers/institute-on-trauma-and-trauma-informed-care/trauma-talks.html

ITTIC’s expert Advisory Panel
http://socialwork.buffalo.edu/social-research/institutes-centers/institute-on-trauma-and-trauma-informed-care/about-us/expert-advisory-panel.html
You Tube Video’s podcasts at ITTIC
https://www.youtube.com/user/UBITTIC
Resource Center:
http://socialwork.buffalo.edu/resources/resource-center/resources.html?cat=1

Resources / Links that were recommended by Trauma-Informed Care #MacroSW chat participants:

Infographic on trauma and trauma-informed care:
http://socialwork.buffalo.edu/content/dam/socialwork/social-research/ITTIC/trauma-informed-care-infographic.pdf

Trauma-Informed Care: Top 10 Tips for Caregivers and Case Managers. By David Ott, Christina Suarez, LCSW and Kimberly Brien,  for Devereux Florida:
https://ncwwi.org/files/Evidence_Based_and_Trauma-Informed_Practice/Trauma_Informed_Care_-_top_10_tips.pdf

Top 10 Recommended Trauma-Informed Care Online Resources
http://www.crisisprevention.com/Blog/April-2012/Top-10-Recommended-Trauma-Informed-Care-Online-Res

National Center for Trauma-Informed Care at U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration: http://www.samhsa.gov/nctic

The National Center for Trauma-Informed Care (NCTIC), National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors:
http://www.nasmhpd.org/content/national-center-trauma-informed-care-nctic-0

Trauma-Informed Care. National Council for Behavioral Health State Association of Addiction Services
http://www.thenationalcouncil.org/topics/trauma-informed-care/

Trauma-Informed and Trauma-Specific Services. Oregon.gov Addictions and Mental Health Services: (resources in and beyond Oregon) 
http://www.oregon.gov/OHA/amh/pages/trauma.aspx

Tarpon Springs, FL, first trauma-informed city, embraces messy path toward peace. http://acestoohigh.com/2014/09/17/tarponsprings/

NASW Maryland Chapter’s 2015 Annual Macro Conference, Sept. 25:
http://www.nasw-md.org/?page=MacroSocialWorkCo

Webinar- Building a Trauma-Informed Nation
Sept. 29 & 30, 2015
Free! Register at https://www.blsmeetings.net/traumainformednation/
Sponsor: The Federal Partners Committee on Women and Trauma

About the #MacroSW Twitter Chat Partners:

#MacroSW is a collaboration of social workers, organizations, social work schools, and individuals working to promote macro social work practice. Macro social work practice focuses on changing larger systems, such as communities and organizations. It encompasses a broad spectrum of actions and ideas, ranging from community organizing and education to legislative advocacy and policy analysis. The chats are held bimonthly on Twitter on the second and fourth Thursday of each month at 9 p.m. EST (6 p.m. PST). For more information, chat schedule, and chat archives check out https://macrosw.wordpress.com

       Our collaborators include:

  • Association for Community Organizing and Social Administration (ACOSA),
    @acosaorg
  • Karen Zgoda, MSW, LCSW, Instructor of Social Work at Bridgewater State University,
    @karenzgoda
  • Network for Social Work Management (NSWM),
    @TheNSWM
  • Rachel West, The Political Social Worker,
    @poliSW
  • University at Buffalo School of Social Work,
    @ubssw
  • Sunya Folayan, MSW, ACSW, founder/executive director, The Empowerment Project, Inc.,
  • @SunyaFolayan
  • Laurel Hitchcock, PhD, Assistant Professor of Social Work, University of Alabama at Birmingham, @LaurelHitchcock
  • Kristin Battista-Frazee, MSW, Author and Marketing Consultant,
    @porndaughter

Vet’s Best Friend

by Jim Bisco

This was originally published in the UB School of Social Work magazine Mosaics, Spring 2015 issue

Research investigates effect shelter dog rehabilitation has on combat veterans

Those normally part of the bustling traffic of the UB Student Union were halted in their hurried tracks during a lunchtime last year by the presence of two shelter dogs at an exhibit table. They were, in a sense, manning an exhibit for an organization called Dog Tags Niagara with their human companions who were military veterans.

Jacob Silver, a junior in biomedical sciences, was among those who paused. A Marine Corps veteran himself carrying on his education after two tours in Afghanistan, he struck up a conversation with Mike, an Iraq war veteran dealing with transition and adjustment to civilian life, who proceeded to explain how Dog Tags turned his life around, and how it’s doing the same for fellow vets experiencing the after-effects of combat. The dogs looked as though they wanted to extol the benefits of the program as well.

White pit bull dog standing, on a leash, with dog blanket of khaki and pink.

Jewell, a (deaf) rescue dog

Thinking the mission of Dog Tags Niagara would make for a highly relevant research project, the pre-med student began to send emails out to various UB departments, eventually grabbing the attention of SSW Research Professor Thomas Nochajski.

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Social Workers Respond to Jihadism – Part I – Rationale and Resources

by Pat Shelly

The School of Social Work at the University at Buffalo has a Global Interest Group (GiG), which organizes events exploring social issues in a global context and bringing it into a local discussion. This encourages our MSW students to think outside the box of U.S. culture and look beyond its particular strategies for social change. At our monthly lunches, students, faculty, staff and community members listen an invited speaker, and join in the discussion that follows.

Topics for 2014-15 included working with survivors of torture, international field placement and its challenges, experiences of women in the Arab Gulf, social work issues in Tanzania, and immigration and human rights.

For the final Global to Local event of the academic year,”Social Work Responses to Jihadism: Promoting Peace and Human Rights” was held as an informal dinner discussion.

purple flower is growing up from cracked earth

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Implicit Bias in Social Work: A #MacroSW chat

by Pat Shelly

Implicit Bias in Social Work: #MacroSW chat was held June 25, 2015.

For an edited version of the hundreds of tweets over the hour-long discussion, go here.

In this twitter chat, we discussed implicit bias in the social work profession. What follows are some introductory thoughts.

To find resources shared during the chat, see below, at the end of the Links and Resources section.

The terrorist hate crime and murders at Ebenezer African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina on June 17th were allegedly committed by a young white man who espoused racist, white supremist reasons as justification for his actions. He held overtly prejudiced beliefs, and acted with deliberate intention. Is racial prejudice evidence of an abnormal psychology? Was the suspect in the Charleston shootings mentally ill or a sociopath? Or is he a thug?

One explanation for the basis for killings of African Americans in the U.S., particularly by law enforcement, has become more prominent in the media recently. It states there is a belief by many officers in the stereotype of the dangerous black person. This is implicit bias: not a conscious avowal of a stereotype but a covert attitude, with a lack of awareness that these biases even exist. Implicit bias can also be positive; a white person may have a bias in favor of African Americans, for example, or be unbiased regarding all religious faiths.

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