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. This book will be an invaluable textbook for undergraduate and post-graduate social work students, practitioners on post-qualifying courses and all social work and allied professionals.
'I particularly liked those (chapters) which had an emphasis on working with strong feelings ranging from anger and aggression, through depression and despair, to love and positive feelings in general... The conclusion draws together the themes, including the important point that social work involves much more than a narrow concern with the current pre-occupation with technical competence; rather there must also be an interest in ability to work with human relationships. Throughout there are useful illustrative case studies... I particularly enjoyed the chapter by Ruch on the contemporary context of practice, including the section on "marketisation, managerialism and the commodification and bureaucratisation fo the individual"... She rightly refers to the colonisation of professional practice by bureaucracy and managerialism but, like many others, manages to retain a sense of hope... In short, I certainly recommend this book especially for those on undergraduate and postgraduate social work courses, as well as experienced social workers and allied professionals. Politicians and managers should also digest the arguments even though it is unlikely to be a welcome read for them.'- Youth & Policy'Relationship-Based Social Work is quite refreshing and unlike many of the theory and practice books I have read recently... This is very easy to read with minimal jargon and is a definite change of pace to more theoretical books... Is this a useful text I will keep beyond my academic career? Definitely yes!'- RostrumRelationship Based Social Work re-affirms the importance of the working relationship between social worker and service user within a contemporary perspective. This is a timely and thought provoking work which provides a well argued counterpoint to the increasing dominance of managerial and outcomes-based approaches to social work practice. As such it will be of great value to students and practitioners alike. - Martin Gill, Lecturer in Social Work, University of East Anglia, UK
About the Author
Gillian Ruch is Senior Lecturer and Head of Teaching Programmes in the Division of Social Work Studies at the University of Southampton. Danielle Turney is Senior Lecturer in Social Work and Director of the Post-Qualifying Specialist Award in Social Work with Children and Young People at the University of Bristol. Adrian Ward is Consultant Social Worker at the Tavistock Centre and is a former senior lecturer at the Universities of Reading and East Anglia.