What is a Social Worker?

"The primary mission of the social work profession is to enhance human well-being and help meet the basic human needs of all people, with particular attention to the needs and empowerment of people who are vulnerable, oppressed, and living in poverty.

Social workers promote social justice and social change with and on behalf of clients. “Clients” is used inclusively to refer to individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities. Social workers are sensitive to cultural and ethnic diversity and strive to end discrimination, oppression, poverty, and other forms of social injustice.

Social workers seek to enhance the capacity of people to address their own needs. Social workers also seek to promote the responsiveness of organizations, communities, and other social institutions to individuals' needs and social problems.

The mission of the social work profession is rooted in a set of core values. These core values, embraced by social workers throughout the profession's history, are the foundation of social work's unique purpose and perspective:

  • Service
  • Social Justice
  • Dignity and Worth of the Person
  • Importance of Human Relationships
  • Integrity
  • Competence

This constellation of core values reflects what is unique to the social work profession. Core values, and the principles that flow from them, must be balanced within the context and complexity of the human experience (NASW, 2008)." 

As a School Social Worker, our mission aligns with those of the NASW and is tailors specifically to assist in the school setting. The California Association of School Social Workers, CASSW, mission is as follows:

  • "To promote service delivery models that will help empower children, families, schools and communities to be effective participants in the learning process.
  • To develop and maintain collaborative relationships with local, state and national associations, organizations and educational institutions for the purpose of meeting the needs of children and families.
  • To increase the presence and development of effective School Social Work Services.
  • To encourage and facilitate the educational and professional development of School Social Workers." (CASSW, 2012).