Social work v/s social service

“The history of ideologies for social change helps to understand the root of social problems”

Since the dawn of independence, India has come a long way and has attained much. Alongside these accomplishments, we have also been glimpsing a growing rigid and repressive nature of the state. The whole range of social welfare becomes a prime responsibility of the state and its associations. The very problematic character of nature and extents of the procedure makes it a herculean chore for the government as well as the implementing authority.

The growth pursued by the country has been primarily been in favor of the elites. (Deep down we all know that). The weaker sections of society have grown more vulnerable, therefore we compel a strong league of social activists today than ever before to work for the victimized sections of our society and to consolidate the country in its struggle towards extensive development. The gap of developments between victimized sections of society is fulfilled by the social workers and social service agencies.

The problem behind this gap is a hierarchical structure and an abundance of inequality.

The Evolution of social welfare(social workers and social services) in India had two broad trends namely reform of the society and provision of specific services to the handicapped and disadvantaged individuals and groups. Social workers and social service workers may execute comparable responsibilities, both deal with individual, interpersonal and societal problems but the extent of the practice, education requirement and salary range for the two professions have some big differences.

Photo from Leverage Edu

Social work is a professional activity of helping individuals, groups, or communities to enhance or rebuild their capacity for social functioning and creating societal conditions favorable to this goal. It is considered to be the structured form of social service. It is the ideologies, rather than philosophies, that appear to have impacted social change and therefore social change. Social workers as a profession are also concerned about bringing about larger societal changes to address the issues. Social work is also based on values and hence can be distinguished by the other professions. They advocate for social justice and social change to build a better society.

The extent of social work is not curbed to functioning in NGOs but it opens up numerous positions at the executive, administration, and strategic planning positions in various governments as well as private corporations. The changes in various sectors can vary depending upon your arena at the master’s level.

Social service on the other hand is the span of public services furnished by the government, private, profit, and non-profit organization. These public services aim to build a more effective organization, build stronger communities, and facilitate equality and opportunity.

As human services organizations become more closely associated with medicine and health care, growth in demand for the other. Many of the places that employ human services professionals are non-profits.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

While one is an act of kindness the other is a profession. The difference can be well explained as when one encounters a hungry man, social service is giving him a fish while social work is teaching him fishing.

Contributed by Urvashi Kori content writer at Mitti Ke Rang

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