Looking back on 2015, the Global Social Service Alliance is deeply grateful for people like you who make the world a better place. A strong social service workforce is needed now more than ever to help create protective environments for healthy development, tackle poverty, and promote social justice. Countless lives were made better through the efforts of the social service workforce.
The past year has been one of great growth and accomplishment for this field in general and for the Global Social Service Workforce Alliance. Your support and that of nearly 800 other members in 73 countries has contributed to this success and we look forward to your engagement in 2016.
We invite you to take a look below as we reflect on the past year and look ahead to the many exciting events and opportunities awaiting your involvement in the coming year.
Achievements in 2015
The Alliance serves as a convener for an inclusive, representative network for discourse and collective learning. In 2015, the Alliance participated in a number of leading learning events worldwide, including:
- Presentation at Global Health Mini-U on workforce collaboration to improve overall health
- World Social Work Day Webinar to Celebrate Success in SSW Strengthening
- Family Care First consultation in Cambodia with local and international NGOs and government representatives
- 2nd Annual Global Social Service Workforce Alliance Symposium
- Webcast on the role of child and youth care workers from the NACCW Conference
- Panel presentations on paraprofessional workers at the REPSSI Forum
The Alliance aims to advance knowledge by deriving, organizing and disseminating critical evidence-based research, resources, tools, models and best practices. The following are a few examples from this past year:
- Recruitment and Retention of Social Work Faculty—A Multi-Country Review documents challenges and effective strategies for faculty recruitment and retention
- The Role of Social Service Workforce Development in Care Reform working paper produced with Better Care Network
- Release of State of the Social Service Workforce Report, a review of data and promising practices for workforce strengthening efforts in 15 countries
- Para Professional Interest Group issued Para Professionals in the Social Service Workforce: Guiding Principles, Functions and Competencies
The network of members in the Alliance helps to advocate for workforce-supportive reforms, including through the following activities in 2015:
- Social Service Workforce Week 2015 helped raise awareness and increase engagement and interest in workforce strengthening initiatives
- Throughout the year, you provided worker profiles and stories of change
- Our many blog posts emphasized many important efforts of social service workers, such as the key role in eliminating violence against women and girls.
Building on Our Success in 2016
In 2016, the Alliance will continue its commitment to being a convener of people and ideas by organizing events and webinars, launching a new website that will allow members to more easily interact with one another, and helping to advance knowledge of effective ways to address workforce challenges by building a body of evidence to support workforce strengthening efforts. And we will continue to support and facilitate efforts to advocate for this important work.
More information on these upcoming events and programs and many more initiatives planned for 2016 will be shared in upcoming e-updates. We also invite you to visit our website, like us on our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter for the latest updates.
Together we can achieve a world where a well-planned, well-trained and well-developed workforce is fully able to provide needed services to care for and support those who need it most. We look forward to your continued input and involvement in the coming year.
The Global Social Service Workforce Alliance
Amy Bess, Nicole Brown & the Alliance Steering Committee