This is a professional who helps persons and relatives work on their well-being by guaranteeing that they have fundamental necessities like food, lodging, and security.

 Interacting with the members of the community directly to assist them make adjustments and resolve issues, providing assistance, suggestions or connections to other agencies and organizations, and keeping extensive records are all essential for the everyday work.

Social workers are able to help people who have experiences that have impacted their lives negatively such as social or emotional disadvantage, injustice, unemployment, and trauma. Social workers see the broader context that influences people and seek to create a more functioning society that respects and protects human rights. When social workers take on more than one patient at the same time it is called a caseload.

Social work definition

Social work is a profession that fosters change in societal advancement, integration, and the growth of persons and groups. Studying human growth, personality, socioeconomic, and cultural structures and interrelations is essential for social-service work. Working with relatives, groups and institutions, social workers have contributed to deliver and progress in ways such as the following:

  • Unemployment compensation.
  • Disability benefits.
  • Civil liberties.
  • Preventing child maltreatment and abuse.
  • Compensation for employees.
  • Reduction in the stigma associated with mental illness.
  • Medicaid and Medicare: two government-funded health-care programmes.

Types of social-service workers

Societal Workers

A specialised social service worker can assist households who happen to deal with private and social issues at school, at home, or in the neighborhood. The social worker is in charge of determining whether the academic, habitat and neighborhood settings are appropriate for kids and their relatives. They collaborate with the academic institution and relatives to find a solution. When necessary these social workers place kids under guardianship or foster care, supervise their well-being, and aid individuals in the adoption and foster-parenting process. Schools, government institutions, or foster-care institutions may hire this sort of social-service.

Clinical and public health

They help persons who are coping with medical ailments or sicknesses manage their trauma. This social- service worker assists the victims and relatives by providing coping skills, medical management and counsellor recommendations. Clinical social workers often assist patients in utilizing administrative projects such as Medicare and Medicaid, as well as integrating their numerous health care providers. A public health social worker works to prevent transmission of disease and to assist communities in recuperating from extensive infections and illnesses. Medical centers, public institutions, and health practitioners usually enlist these types of social workers. 

Community Workers

Community social workers contribute to and improve the civil rights climate of a particular town, city or neighborhood. Rather than working with individual persons, they collaborate with a large group of people in the area. These specialists concentrate on getting organised and building social projects to improve personal satisfaction in their communities. They are most commonly used by local gov’t entities.

Mental health Workers

Mental health social workers help addicts and persons with mental ailments by coordinating therapy, rehab programs, and counselling. They assist patients in finding low cost medical treatment and matching them with the right counsellors for their needs. This type of social worker is also in charge of awareness and prevention initiatives in order to discover people who are in need of their assistance. Clinics, voluntary organizations, and public agencies also hire substance abuse social-services.

Oftentimes, these social practitioners are required to go through mental health social work accreditation and specialization.


Service personnel and their families encounter specific obstacles as they get ready for, serve in, and leave the armed forces, and can get assistance from a military social worker who knows their needs. These social workers analyse war veterans’ well-being, detect post-traumatic stress disorder, survivors’ guilt, trauma or other emotional and psychological issues and make therapy recommendations. They also assist relatives in coping with a loved one’s service-related injuries or mobilisation. Military social workers are usually licensed by their gov’t although they tend to work in the private sector for health clinics who have been asked to support the state’s military.

Responsibilities, roles and skills of social workers

What does a social worker do?

Social workers work in diverse administration environments and departments, such as hospitals, public and private clinics, senior centers, educational institutions, psychological health settings; drug and alcohol addiction services, non-government organisations; displacement camps, jails, universities and advanced education facilities; foster families, endorsed, and gov’t agencies.

Because of the state of social work, specialists must assist individuals who currently face a lot of difficulties. The social worker should be able to deal calmly, professionally, and compassionately with a wide diversity of issues connected to children, households, the aged, addiction, and abuse. They are in charge of informing their clients, medical providers, and co-workers about their treatment plans.

Poverty, violence, unemployment, mental issues and trauma are all issues that social workers help their clients survive. They analyse the issues their clients are having and offer alternatives like therapy, physical migration, medical treatment coordination, and occupation placement assistance.

Social worker roles

A social worker should be able to:

  • be able to work under pressure
  • manage very challenging behaviour
  • organise their responsibilities and workload
  • be understanding of other people’s lifestyles
  • work with individuals from various backgrounds
  •  visit clients where they reside
  • Identify the requirements of clients and ensuring that they will have access to adequate support programs.
  • Assist customers in circumstances where they’re being subjected to inequity, unfairness, or prejudice.

Social work professional environment

Social workers routinely travel between offices. They have a workplace, but they also visit clients’ residences, classrooms, and medical care centers on a regular basis. Clients may also meet up with them at their workplace as the social worker’s role is to interact with clients and establish trusting and compassionate connections depending on the mode of social services they have received specialization in. A school, medical center, or rehabilitation center employs a social worker who works from their office and within the contractor’s facilities. The social worker’s role is to keep an eye on their facility’s surroundings, plan sessions with individuals who are coursing through difficult times, and check in on rehabilitation patients on a regular basis to verify that they are making progress.

Government as well as community social workers usually pay visits to individuals in vulnerable regions, clients’ homes, or schools. These social workers aim at noting the challenges the client experiences in their habitat or community, therefore they must be able to see the surroundings and offer knowledgeable suggestions to enhance the client’s standard of living.

How to become a social worker

Social service personnel use their desire to support everyone else to benefit society through the process of linking patients to potentially helpful facilities and tools and also proper social assistance. They provide psychotherapy, help stop drug addiction, safeguard numerous families and communities, and assist in emergency conditions. The responsibilities of caseworkers(social workers) differ depending on their professional context and speciality. A few really function in the field of children’s services, campuses, care centers, as well as supportive assisted living facilities. A large majority of people get jobs that match their academic credentials and expertise in the field. This makes them very important to the society and as such are constantly in need of extra hands, here are some of the criteria necessary to become one:

  • A Bachelor of Social Work(a four-year degree) is required to fill in as a social worker in Australia. This course offers theoretical, sociology and clinical placement opportunities.
  • If you already have a tertiary degree, you can go for a two-year Master’s degree.
  • With more experience in the field, social workers can advance to more specialised professions and departments in family therapy, research, or policy and management.
  • Chipping in with a hotline or other direct help assignments could assist you with acquiring proficient experience and reinforce your portfolio.
  • Finally, you can apply to register with the Australian Association of Social Workers, the institution for professional social workers in Australia.

Social work jobs


  • School social worker


School social workers help kids, parents, and teachers discover problems that are interfering with their education. They help the kids overcome visceral, social, and educational obstacles so that all children have access to adequate and secure academic environments. School social workers actively work with parents and educators to identify students who are failing academically and socially and give counselling to help them achieve.


  • Case worker


Clients in vulnerable neighborhoods receive counselling and help from social workers called caseworkers.

They set objectives for the clients and follow up on them at regular intervals to make sure that they are continuing to improve health and wellbeing. Caseworkers visit their clients’ homes to assess their living conditions and offer recommendations on how to make their homes safer and healthier.


  • Direct support professional


People with developmental disabilities like autism benefit from social workers who have undergone specialization in direct assistance, practitioners with a Master of Social Work are more than capable of working in this setting . They assist the client with everyday errands such as housework, cooking, maintenance, grocery, and appointment attendance. Direct support providers help their patients with counselling, crisis management, and treatment when needed. They are in charge of adhering to state care laws and guaranteeing that patients live in a safe environment.


  • Program coordinators/ counsellors


Program coordinators work with a variety of social-service agencies, like hospitals, schools, and group homes. They are in charge of supervisory activities such as inventory, employee scheduling, and special programme planning for the institution. Program coordinators are in charge of ensuring adherence to policies and creating new practices as required to increase service performance and reliability.


What is social work?

Social work is a rapidly advancing occupation in Australia and the world at large. 

Advocates for equality, human rights, social growth and development rely heavily on social-service workers.

In a range of situations, such as child welfare services, crisis support, elderly care, impairment, unemployment, drug misuse, medical care, education, social workers can also provide case management, counselling, and advocacy to solve individual and interpersonal concerns.

Are you looking for a job that enables you to help people? Now you know what is a social worker and you’re ready to become a practitioner after undergoing the aforementioned procedures.