Question # 1 Intervention and Relevant Literature

Question # 1: Intervention and Relevant Literature

In my practice example, my clients include a family that has been split by a nasty divorce. The husband and wife are divorced via a mutual agreement. Their eldest daughter is brought by the father and the current fiancée, and the younger daughter is brought by the mother. After the divorce, the mother has not seen the eldest daughter due to issues relating to visitation rights. The eldest daughter has shown a defiant attitude and an unwillingness to communicate with family members. Social workers have intervened in an attempt to get her to change her attitude. The goal of intervention is to establish communication by listening to the eldest daughter’s side of the story, engage her, and then let lead her to actively communicate with the family.

Engagement is defined by Mirabito (2001) as a process that sees a client begin to actively participate in an intervention. It is a stage that aids in bringing about positive treatment outcome. The engagement process entails agreeing on the objectives and goals of an intervention process through a collaboration of the client and the social worker. Involuntary clients are those that attend a treatment session under coercion of significant others or legal bodies (Finn, 2020). The eldest daughter is an involuntary client in the practice example.

To a significant extent, the interventions I utilized with the involuntary client were unsuccessful because the child was not willing to talk, showed some levels of resentment towards the family members, was deeply hurt by the decision to bring her for a therapy session, and that she seemed to have no control over her life. The intervention was also further complicated by the fact that the child is autistic. For example, in response to question about her age and her current grade, she responds with a casual non-interactive “11” and “fifth grade”. Her one word responses are indicative of her defiant attitude and an unwillingness to participate.

Despite the initial unsuccessful engagement with the involuntary client, there were a number of points that worked very well. The intervention was able to arouse the child’s curiosity as the interview continued, prompting her to even ask questions and answer in full sentences. For example, she asks “What kind of teacher are you at a normal university?” and later describes her new school as okay but “there is a lot of homework than the previous school”. She also describes several additions to the curriculum in her new school in an enthusiastic tone to indicate that she is interested in the discussion.

Question # 2: Termination

Termination is best described by Rosenthal-Gellman (2007) as a conclusion of a social worker-client intervention process. It is the systematic process of disengaging the work relationship. Usually, this occurs when objectives are met, or when the prior agreed tie for working or an engagement ends. It can also come when a client no longer shows interest in continuing. My experience of termination with the teenage client was smooth and from a mutual point of view. I was able to create a friendship in a work-related setting as one of the interventions I used to get the client to engage. The experience taught me a lot on how to terminate a relationship. My style of termination was very simple and based on the prior relationship I had fostered with the client. I began by talking about common hobbies in life, such as sports, basketball, cars, and other matters of common interest. In this intervention strategy, my intention was to engage the client and open her up to actively drive our conversations. It was a form of a service stage, which helped me to establish a relationship with the client and communicate smoothly. To help me track the client’s dynamics, I started moving the conversation beyond the therapy sessions. I wanted her to see life beyond her current situation, to engage me on a level above the family therapy session. I wanted the client to follow my directions on how to tackle issues, how to respond to different situations, and regard my advice about life. My intention was to help her to begin to be independent even after the end of the service. I assured her that she can contact me, through her parents, to talk about the little things in her life. In the termination process, I learnt that establishing a connection and relationship with the client can help to create a good parting environment.

However, my style also presented a number of challenges. For example, the client was too free to a point of asking me personal questions. While such questions are an indication of god progress in the intervention program, it could also mean that the objectives of the intervention and engagement are not well understood. In addition, the client often asked me questions outside of my major in social work. I am not trained to respond to such questions and therefore I could not provide a satisfactory response. As a social worker, it is important that one maintains honesty with the client (Walsh & Meyersohn, 2001). Another problem with my style and what I learnt about it is that the client should not contact me after termination of service, yet, I felt like I gave the client the idea that she is free to talk to me about anything. Keeping close contact with a client after termination of service is considered a poor practice by Hepworth, Rooney, & Larsen (2017) because it means that the reintegration to society would be slower and problematic for the client. Therefore, because I already made the connection with the client, my strategy was to discourage any engagement outside of the ethical and official communication channels. Private messaging through WeChat or Text messaging would not have good consequences. Any communication would be approved by the parents and in an official capacity through the required channels. I learnt that it is important to prepare the client early for termination of service. This would ease the pain of parting ways especially because of the relationship that has already been established. For this client, my approach was to end any communication gradually. Communication would be reduced from multiple times a week, to once a week, then to once every two weeks, and then to once in a few weeks, gradually ending the contact with the client. Because of my client’s attitude and history as a delinquent, it is important that she learns to integrate into the society and conform to sociable behavior.

Question # 3: Organizational Analysis and Organizational Change

A. Anti-Oppressive Practice

The clients served by my agency are mainly delinquent juveniles. A majority of them are from impoverished backgrounds. They have gone into crime as a way of escaping poverty and in search of a better livelihood due to the oppressive nature of societies (Morgaine & Capous-Desyllas, 2015). A majority of them start with petty crimes such as stealing things and engaging in embarrassing acts of delinquency. Some have odd jobs to create a façade, and they present a normal livelihood only for them to get caught later. Their environment and economic background push them into criminality. Their conditions already pre-expose them to crime even at tender ages. In comparison to their age mates from better economic, environmental, and educational conditions, the less privileged individuals are more likely to commit crimes. This is a form of social oppression. We must call on the society to counter oppression and advocate for equality through social policies. Some economic and educational resources should be directed to impoverished neighborhoods. Another point is that when a child from a wealthy family makes the same mistake as a child from a poor family, the rich family can hire a lawyer for the child, but the parents of a poor family have no financial means or the consciousness to hire a lawyer. The result is likely to be dire for the poor child. The social system therefore shows different outcomes and treatments in regard to the punishment of two children who have the same behavior, but from different backgrounds. According to Berzoff (2011), the society subconsciously approves oppressive practice that end up creating different life trajectories for children based on their backgrounds. A poor child is more likely to end up in a juvenile correctional facility as opposed to one from a well-off economic setting. The aim of my organization is to provide knowledge and information to the parents of the children to protect them and other youth groups from such societal standards. On the basis of the anti-oppressive practice, it is important to note that the actions of a society are more likely to form a lasting culture (Gitterman & Heller, 2011). When teenagers who have had previous criminal records are reintegrated into society, a majority of employers intentionally discriminate them, openly refusing to hire them based on their actual abilities and work ethic. Instead, they push them back into criminality by openly judging them, being biased on their behavior, discriminating them, and labeling them using oppressive terms. Regardless of the intentions or truth in such actions, this is a form of discrimination and social inequality. Therefore, it is important that these young people be accepted back into the society, in programs such as what my organization provides so that they are nurtured to make better choices later in their lives.

B. Serving Vulnerable Populations

In my organization, our main aim is to show how to distribute power, assign roles to society members, while including equity, diversity, and inclusion without discrimination and biasness. Our main target group is teenage delinquents and juveniles who had trouble with the law. We offer different youth groups links to resources that can help them in forging a better path for their lives. We intend to fight all forms of discrimination and social inequality, especially where young people are involved. Our organization equips them with skills and knowledge to stay on the right side of the law and also connect them to other groups that specialize in providing employment.

Despite our best efforts in ensuring that teenage delinquents have a second chance at life, there are gaps in services. For example, we are not able to link these juvenile criminals with suitable mentors all the time. Sometimes, the best we can do is offer guidance and hope that the young persons would make better choices in the future. Naar-King (2011) found that a majority of young offenders lack a basic structure that helps them to navigate life after exiting the correctional system. Another major gap in our agency is the fact that we do not have adequate programs to educate societies on how to welcome and help in the reintegration of young offenders into the society. We tend to focus only on the young offenders and device ways to help them. My organization is not able to help these juvenile offenders and still afford other parallel programs to educate communities on how to accept the former and help them forge a path forward. Therefore, our capacity to help young offenders reenter the society is flawed in a way that does not offer much help. Upon service termination, we do not have contact with our young clients again. These gaps are severe and may destroy the foundations that the agency instils in these young people.

Cox (2006) posited that all young offenders require support to reenter their respective societies. To address these gaps in service in my agency, I recommend that we partner with other like-minded organizations in order to grow our network and be able to help young people to rise up from delinquency and integrate fully into the society. Other organizations will help our agency to focus on a single aspect such as social work, and other partners to focus on other aspects such as reintegration to society. Other agencies would then step in to provide employment and to educate communities on how to treat young offenders so as to avoid pushing them back to criminality.


Berzoff, J. (2011). Why we need a biopsychosocial perspective with vulnerable, oppressed, and

at-risk clients. Smith College Studies in Social Work. 81, 132-166.

Cox, K. F., (2006). Investigating the impact of strength-based assessment on youth with

emotional or behavioral disorders. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 15(3), 287- 301.

Finn, J. L. (2020). Just practice: A social justice approach to social work. Oxford University


Gitterman, A. & Heller, N. R. (2011). Integrating social work perspectives and models with

concepts, methods and skills with other professions’ specialized approaches. Clinical Social Work Journal, 39, 304-211.

Hepworth, D.H., Rooney, R., & Larsen, J.A. (2017). Chapter 19. The Final Phase: Evaluation

and Termination. In Direct social work practice: Theory and skills (10th ed.; pp. 568-584). Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/ Cole.

Mirabito, D. M. (2002). Mining treatment termination data in an adolescent mental health

service: A quantitative study. Social Work in Health Care, 33(3-4), 71-90.

Morgaine, K, & Capous-Desyllas, M. (2015). Anti-Oppressive Social Work Practice: Putting

Theory into Practice, 1st Edition. California: Cognella Academic Publishing.

Naar-King, S. (2011). Motivational interviewing in adolescent treatment. Canadian Journal of

Psychiatry, 56(11), 651-656.

Rosenthal-Gellman, C. (2007). Challenging endings: First year MSW interns’ experiences with

forced termination and discussion points for supervisory guidance. Clinical Social Work Journal, 35, 79-90.

Walsh, J., & Meyersohn, K. (2001). Ending clinical relationships with people with

schizophrenia. Health & Social Work, 26, 188-195.