What does a family social worker do?
Family social workers strive to improve the well-being of families. They focus particularly on improving the lives of children and ensuring they have proper food, clothing, and shelter. Many family social workers work with single parents, and others set up adoptions or foster homes for children. They also help improve children’s academic progress and they work within the school system and help children deal with a variety of issues such as misbehavior, peer pressure, and absence. Some work with the teachers and provide advice on how to challenge students in the classroom. Family social workers are responsible for monitoring their services for all of their clients.
What kind of training does a family social worker need?
Family social workers typically need at least a bachelor degree in social work, psychology, sociology, or other related field. Some employers such as those in health settings prefer applicants with a master degree in social work. Most family social workers complete internships while pursuing their education to gain practical experience in the field. All states require all social workers to be licensed. Licensing requirements typically include minimum education and experience and passing a written examination. Family social workers must complete continuing education and additional training throughout their careers to maintain their licenses, keep their skills up to date, and stay abreast with advancements in the field.
What are the prospects for a career as a family social worker?
Employment of family social workers is expected to grow as fast as average for all professions, increasing 12% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The growing population and increase demand for family social services will drive job growth.
Job prospects should be good especially for family social workers with extensive experience. Many job openings will arise from the need to replace family social workers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.
How much do family social workers make?
As of April 2010, the average annual salary for family social workers is $41,000; average annual family social worker salaries vary greatly by location, employer, education, experience, and benefits (2).
A career as a family social worker is an excellent choice for individuals with a strong interest in working with many different types of families. Family social workers must have a solid understanding of the policies and procedures of family social services programs. Patience, understanding, detail orientation, and good problem solving skills are necessary traits. Family social workers must have excellent communication and interpersonal skills and ability to inspire trust, confidence, and respect in their clients. They must be able to effectively work independently as well as part of a team.