Dr. Glenn Abraham and Dr. Joy Shytle: March is Social Work Month

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 13, 2023

March is Social Work Month, and as faculty in Ohio University Southern’s social work program, we’re excited to celebrate the efforts and impact of social workers in our communities and around the world. 

The theme for this year’s celebration is “Social Work Breaks Barriers.” For generations, social workers have broken barriers to help people live better lives.

They’ve helped break through barriers that have led to the creation of a minimum wage, a 40-hour work week and the implementation of Social Security benefits. 

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Today, they’re breaking barriers by advocating for student-debt relief, equal rights for all and improving delivery of health care and mental health care. These helping professionals work everywhere — hospitals, mental health care facilities, child welfare agencies, schools, veteran centers and in local, state and federal government. 

Social workers were at the forefront of the global COVID-19 pandemic. 

When most of us were quarantined at home, social workers were out in their communities — making sure children and at-risk youth were attending classes over Zoom, providing food and other resources to the elderly, helping those with substance-use disorder get the help they needed to stay sober and helping tens of thousands of people of people stay connected to loved ones quarantined in nursing homes or at hospital. 

Social workers trained at Ohio University Southern have contributed to the local area in important ways, supporting children, families and communities through their work with The Counseling Center, Big Brothers, Big Sisters; The Federal Bureau of Prisons, STAR Community Justice Center; Lawrence and Scioto County Department of Job and Family Services, Pathways, Inc; Safe Harbor; Southern Ohio Medical Center and so many more. 

Ohio Southern’s social work students benefit from a robust network of local partners who provide valuable mentorship and internship opportunities, and we are grateful for their support of our students. 

Globally, the need for social workers continues to grow. In our region of the state, where poverty and poor health exceed the state average, this need is even greater. 

In order to meet the rising needs in our communities, social workers need your support. 

During Social Work Month and beyond, we urge you to learn more about the profession, thank the social workers in your life, and do what you can do to help assist them in their positive, life-affirming work. 

And if you’re interested in pursuing a career in social work, please reach out. This is a uniquely important time to join a profession dedicated to service, social justice, and dignity and respect for all.  

Dr. Glenn Abraham and Dr. Joy Shytle are faculty members in Ohio University Southern’s social work program. Their department can be contacted by calling 740-533-4600.