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Article

Carole Zugazaga

Claude Lévi-Strauss (1908–2009) was a French anthropologist and ethnologist, and has been called one of the fathers of modern anthropology.

Article

Santos H. Hernández

Mutual aid associations were established as early as colonial times in this country but gained prominence among the early immigrant populations during the 17th and 18th centuries. They typically arose among newly immigrated groups, particularly among ethnic groups and cultures with extended kinship networks. The purpose of this discussion is to present characteristics and social welfare functions of mutual aid societies as they developed in the United States.

Article

Kristin M. Ferguson

Considerable definitional vagueness exists regarding civil society, in part due to the concept's long history and multiple underlying schools of thought. Issues of multiculturalism and social justice are central to the term. Civil society is also a global concept, referring to the supranational sphere. The social work profession can benefit from collaborative action with local civil society associations in working to dismantle structural inequality and enhance opportunities for disadvantaged populations.

Article

Larraine M. Edwards

Isaac Max Rubinow (1875–1936) was a consultant to the President's Committee on Economic Security and director of the Jewish Welfare Society of Philadelphia. He led the American social insurance movement and contributed to Jewish American welfare programs.

Article

Amanda Moore McBride

Civic engagement is the backbone of the social work profession. Through our civic mission, we have long organized and empowered citizens in common pursuits to address social, economic, and political conditions. In the United States, the status of social and political engagement is of heightened concern, particularly as emerging research demonstrates a range of effects. The challenge for social work is to increase the capacity of the nonprofit sector to promote and maximize engagement, especially among low-income and low-wealth individuals, through theory-driven, evidence-based interventions.

Article

Paul H. Stuart

Stephen Humphreys Gurteen (1836–1898) founded the first Charity Organization Society in the United States. In 1875 he was ordained an Episcopal priest and appointed assistant minister of St. Paul's Church, Buffalo, New York. The Buffalo COS launched in December 1877.

Article

Susan Donner

Ellen Gates Starr (1859–1940) was a social reformer who, with Jane Addams, co-founded Hull-House to provide women with a new avenue for living independently. The condition of the poor population led her to become active in the labor movement.

Article

Jean K. Quam

Charles Loring Brace (1826–1890) was a writer, minister, and social reformer. He worked with homeless children, initiating child welfare services, and was the founder and executive director of the Children's Aid Society of New York City.

Article

Allan Moscovitch

John Joseph Kelso (March 31, 1864–September 30, 1935) was a young journalist when he became involved in child welfare in his adopted home of Toronto. He was instrumental in the passage of the first child protection legislation in Canada, and in spreading the need for voluntary children’s aid societies across Ontario and for similar legislation across Canada. He became superintendent of child welfare in 1893 and remained in that post for 40 years, shaping the development of the child welfare system in Ontario and Canada.

Article

Dennis L. Poole

Voluntarism can be interpreted at the levels of values, structure, and ideology. In Western society, voluntarism rests heavily on secular and religious values originating in both Greco-Roman and Judeo-Christian traditions. Today the voluntary sector in the United States can be divided into five main types: social support networks, grassroots associations, nonprofit organizations, human service agencies, and private foundations. At the level of ideology, voluntarism can be interpreted as “civil society.”

Article

American social welfare began in the colonial period with the adoption of the Elizabethan Poor Laws as the basis for treatment of society's poor and deviant. By the beginning of the Progressive Era (1900), immigration, the Women's Movement, scientific investigation of social problems, and societal growth produced significant innovations in both public and private perceptions, programs, and treatment in such areas as poor relief, mental and physical health, and corrections, and led to the beginnings of professionalization of social work.

Article

The concept of evidence-based practice (EBP) was introduced in social work by Mary Richmond, who had the revolutionary notion of adopting a more direct practice with clients. The origins of EBP in the United States are traced, as well as its emergence in the Arab world. Discussed are various Arab faculties and departments of social work that include EBP among their academic courses. Social work settings that apply EBP in professional interventions with clients are examined. Barriers and challenges to the processes of both teaching and learning EBP in Arab society are highlighted. The future outlook for EBP in Arab schools of social work is explored.

Article

Jean K. Quam

Arthur Dunham (1893–1980) was a pacifist, writer, and social work educator. He wrote extensively about community development and social welfare administration. His writing contributed to the evolution of community organization as a social work method.

Article

Renee Bowman Daniel and Karen Berner Little

Maria Maltby Love (1840–1931), social architect and humanitarian, pioneered two projects to improve the lives of women and their families: the Fitch Creche (1881), the first U.S. day nursery, and the Church District Plan (1896), a citywide, interdenominational community services program.

Article

John F. Longres

Mary Ellen Richmond (1861–1928) formulated the first comprehensive statement of direct social work practice principles. She founded the Public Charities Association, the juvenile court, and the Housing Association, and helped to develop teaching materials for Charity Organization Societies nationwide.

Article

Sadye L. M. Logan

David Hardcastle (1939–2019) was a highly respected scholar, author, educator, and administrator. His last book, Community Practice (3rd ed.), is still viewed as seminal in the field of community-organizing theory and practice. Hardcastle was also compassionate about social-justice issues. He was committed to creating equitable program and policy changes in society with a view toward a better future.

Article

Sadye L. M. Logan

Florence Lieberman (1918–2011) made extraordinary contributions to the field of clinical social work in New York City while a professor at Hunter College School of Social Work (now Silberman School of Social Work), where she served from 1966 to 1986.

Article

Sadye L. M. Logan

Alvin Schorr (1921–2016) had a long and distinguished career fighting poverty on many fronts. His career was essentially identified with public social policy, particularly with the issues surrounding income maintenance. After working for several years in social service agencies, he began a career in policy in the government and academic sectors. He dedicated his life and career to fighting poverty. His personal motto was, “Tikkun Olam,” which refers to repairing the world through acts of social justice and kindness.

Article

Philip R. Popple

Formal or institutional social services began in the United States in the late 19th century as a response to problems that were rapidly increasing as a result of modernization. These services were almost entirely private until the Great Depression in the 1930s when the government became involved via provisions of the Social Security Act. Services expanded greatly, beginning in the 1960s when the federal government developed a system wherein services were supported by public funds but provided through contracts with private agencies. This trend has continued and expanded, resulting in a uniquely American system wherein private agencies serve as vehicles for government social service policy.

Article

Jean K. Quam

Richard Clarke Cabot (1865–1939) was a physician and educator from Massachusetts, who initiated the first social work department at a US medical school. He instituted home visits to gain information about patients and make medicine more efficient through social work.