Write a three – five page essay sharing your experiences in/with the field of human services as a provider and/or a participant. Be prepared to present your summary in class. Follow these instructions:
a) As a Recipient: How were you or your child or partner helped? Did you or they have a negative experience and in some way, have you been hurt in the process? Did you/they have a say in the process? How did you/they feel? Empowered or disempowered; respected/disrespected or a mixed experience?
b) As a Provider: The kinds of agencies, institutions, or organizations you have worked in or volunteered for:
What problems or needs do people have who come in for help?
What are the deeper sources or causes of these problems?
How does your agency, and how have you helped and possibly hurt those you serve?
Are you able to truly address the real issues facing those you serve or do you feel that your hands are tied to some degree?
Do you have a significant voice in your workplace in terms of policy and practice and how services are designed and delivered?
At your workplace do you feel empowered/disempowered, respected/disrespected, effective/ineffective or mixed on all counts?
c) Facilitating change by advocating for or acting as a change agent
Have you ever been part of any change efforts in relation to human needs and/or human services, either at work or elsewhere?
What were you fighting for and what were you up against?
How would you assess the value of this process of change?