Rural Social Work

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-02-10
  • Publisher: Policy Pr
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In much of the Western world the concerns of rural people are marginalised and rural issues neglected. Indeed, most social work literature implicitly assumes an urban context although increasing political, academic and professional interest in rural policy and rural services is beginning to demonstrate that 'urban' models of practice may be unworkable in the countryside. This stimulating book draws upon a rich variety of material to show why rural social work is such a challenging and absorbing field of practice. It incorporates research from different disciplines and places to provide an accessible and comprehensive introduction to rural practice. The first part of the book focuses upon the experience of rurality. It indicates how social workers can understand the variability of different rural places, the social dynamics of life in small communities, and the experiences of people who live there. The authors use studies from Australia, Canada, the United States and the UK to explore the problems and possibilities of rural practice. The second part of the book turns to the development of rural practice, reviewing different ways of working from casework through to community development. It shows how working in rural areas requires a more ambitious and socially engaged approach to practice that is both demanding and rewarding for practitioners. It then addresses key issues in the recruitment, education, training and support of rural workers. This book is relevant to planners, managers and practitioners in other welfare services such as health and youth work, who are likely to face similar challenges in providing effective services.

Author Biography

Dr. Richard Pugh is Reader in Social Work at Keele University and has written on a range of rural issues including rural racism, professional and personal boundaries, and the theoretical development of rural social work. Professor Brian Cheers is Director of the Centre for Rural and Regional Development at the University of South Australia. He has written and researched extensively on rural services and rural communities.

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