Centre for Social Work Practice

Relationship-Based Social Work: Getting to the Heart of Practice.

Review posted January 01, 2010


By Gillian Ruch, Danielle Turney and Adrian Ward. Jessica Kingsley (Editors)

Relationship-based practice is founded on the idea that human relationships are of paramount importance and should be at the heart of all good social work practice.

This book provides a thorough guide to relationship-based practice in social work, communicating the theory using illustrative case studies and offering a model for practice. Case examples cover the different service user groups including children, families, older people, refugees, people with disabilities and people with mental health difficulties. The book explores the ranges of emotions that practitioners may encounter, and covers working in both short-term and long-term relationships.

It also outlines key skills for the individual such as how to establish rapport with the client and using empathy to build a relationship, and explores systemic issues such as incorporating service user perspectives and building appropriate support systems for practice, management and leadership

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