Breaking Down Advocacy Silos to Strengthen Macro-Level Change
Social Workers & Community Psychologists, Allies from Intersecting Domains
By Rachel L. West
Advocacy & Community Outreach Consultant
With pressing social issues and conflicts around the globe regularly calling out for intelligent, effective, and compassion solutions, the need for greater cooperation among diverse disciplines in the fields of community-related work is stronger now more than ever. Fostering interdisciplinary collaborations can go a long way in creating the macro-level societal change that impacts those issues. But as can be the case in academic fields of discourse, professionals hunker down in their “advocacy silos” (in the scientific professional, this can be called “stovepiping”) not aware of the larger context of other related fields and their resources, their interdependent relationships, and the great potential for healthful, societally beneficial collaboration.
Two fields in particular — community psychology and macro social work — share overlapping values and each field has unique talents and resources that they can share. How are the practices of macro social work and community psychology similar yet distinct? What can social workers and community psychologists do to collaborate for macro-level social change? Join us for a Twitter chat on Thursday, July 21, 9-10 p.m. EDT, for a discussion on these and other questions and related topics, including sharing of resources, practices, and research across these disciplines that are at the intersection of social change and working toward greater community well-being.
Rachel L. West (@poliSW), L.M.S.W., Advocacy & Community Outreach Consultant, ACOSA (@acosaorg) Board Member, & Instructor at Stony Brook University-School of Social Welfare
Peter Charles Benedict, M.A. (@petebenedict), Outreach and Communications Specialist, Society for Community Research and Action (@scra)
Taylor Scott (@jtaybscott), Administrative Coordinator, Society for Community Research and Action
Jean Hill , Ph.D. (@jeanhillnm), SCRA Past President, and Director of Institutional Research, New Mexico Highlands University
James R. Cook, Ph.D. (@jimcookuncc), SCRA Past President, and Professor of Psychology, The University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Questions we will consider in this twitter chat
— What is community psychology and how is it distinct yet similar to social work?
— What are the primary goals and motivations of community psychology?
— What resources (practices, research, etc.) does community psychology offer?
— What resources does macro social work offer?
— What questions do you have about either community psychology or macro social work?
— How can social workers and community psychologists better work together to share resources and collaborate?
— What were some good collaborations you were a part of, and what were the benefits?
— What types of circumstances have you found yourself in that would have benefited from a collaboration, and if it didn’t happen, then why not?
What is Community Psychology?
Check out a brief VIDEO that describes community psychology. You can find additional information on the website for the Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA), which describes CP research, training programs, and includes information on and relevant resources. Also find SCRA on Twitter (@scra), Facebook, and LinkedIn.
What is Macro Social Work?
The Society for Community Research and Action (@scra), a division of the American Psychological Association, is an 1,100-member professional organization devoted to advancing community research and social action, and it also serves and supports many different disciplines engaged in community work. SCRA members are committed to promoting health and empowerment and to preventing problems in communities, groups, and individuals. SCRA’s vision is to have a strong, global impact on enhancing well-being and promoting social justice for all people by fostering collaboration where there is division and empowerment where there is oppression. Learn more at scra27.org.
Current Chat Partners of #MacroSW:
- Association for Community Organization and Social Administration (ACOSA), @acosaorg
- Jeff Fromknecht, MSW, Attorney & Counselor at Law at Side Project Inc., @SideProjectInc
- Karen Zgoda, MSW, LCSW, Instructor of Social Work at Bridgewater State University, @karenzgoda
- Kristin Battista-Frazee, MSW, Author and Marketing Consultant,@porndaughter
- Laurel Hitchcock, PhD, Assistant Professor of Social Work, University of Alabama at Birmingham, @laurelhitchcock
- Pat Shelly, Director of Community Engagement and Expansion, University at Buffalo School of Social Work, @ubsswand@PatShellySSW
- Rachel L. West, LMSW, The Political Social Worker, @poliSW
- Relando Thompkins-Jones, MSW, LLMSW, writer of Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian (N.A.H.)@Relando_T and @N_A_H_Blog
- Sunya Folayan, MSW, ACSW, founder/executive director, The Empowerment Project, Inc., @SunyaFolayan