Our Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships, Erica Sandoval, LMSW, wrote the below post for National Professional Social Work Month.

What is social work? I constantly get that question and not many understand what we do. Social workers are professionals that graduate with a Master of Social Work degree from an accredited School of Social Work. Social Workers must follow the Code of Ethics that have as their Preamble core professional values. We are advocates, mental health providers, educators, policymakers, executives, leaders, social activists, and medical professionals, but most importantly we carry resilience and hope in our pocket. 

I am proud to be one of the three social workers in my family, and all three sisters work in different areas. Jennifer is a clinical therapist at a mental health clinic and a hospital social worker at NYPH Queens. Jackie is a Case Manager at UVM in Vermont. I am proud and humbled to be part of the enCourage Kids team as Sr. Director of Strategic Partnerships. Social Workers hold many different positions and maintain a critical role in hospitals. Medical Social Workers help patients and their families cope with the emotional and social responses to illness and treatment. They also educate patients and their families on entitlements, community resources, and health insurance coverage. Most importantly they are the glue of the medical team in that they handle all aspects of bio-psychosocial/spiritual discharge planning supports for the patient and their family. Along with resilience and hope, Social Workers empower!

March is National Professional Social Work Month. As we approach the final days of the month, we honor our Social Workers and healthcare heroes on the frontlines. Amongst our doctors, nurses, pharmacists, scientists, and paramedics, social workers continue to show up and support our most vulnerable communities. They care for the most in need during this pandemic and provide resources to support and empower other individuals, families, neighborhoods, cities, and organizations as we work through this challenging time. Social Workers are heroes!

We have received some pictures from our medical partners.

From left to right: Nadia Veras, LCSW, Alexandra Elia, LMSW, Lisa Hamilton, LCSW, Raydale Blaylock, and Denise Velazuquez, LCSW. They are pediatric social workers at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx.

Karen Turi, LCSW, is in the front and Candida Leon, LCSW is in the back

Jennifer Sandoval, LMSW, at NewYork-Presbyterian Queens.

Jackie Sandoval, LMSW, Case Manager at UVM in Vermont, and Erica Sandoval, LMSW, is Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships at enCourage Kids Foundation.

To learn more about social work, go to:

https://www.socialworkers.org/

http://www.helpstartshere.org/