Spirituality Matters in Social Work: Connecting Spirituality, Religion, and Practice (Race and Politics)

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9780415747035: Spirituality Matters in Social Work: Connecting Spirituality, Religion, and Practice (Race and Politics)

Offering a focus that is lacking (or not clearly evident) in most spirituality books, Dudley addresses specific ways of incorporating spirituality into practice and integrates many of the contributions of other writers into an overall eclectic practice approach. His approach revolves around many of the core competencies of the EPAS accreditation (CSWE, 2008). Most of the core competencies are addressed with an emphasis on professional identity, ethical practice, critical thinking, diversity, practice contexts, and, a major practice framework of the book, the practice stages of engagement, assessment, intervention, and evaluation.

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About the Author:

James (Jim) Dudley has been involved in spirituality activities and their role in social work practice for many years. Besides teaching numerous Spirituality and Social Work courses at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, he has also conducted research and published on the topic, as well as led several retreats and workshops. He has a Master’s Degree in Spirituality Studies and has completed training in spiritual direction. He also has an MSW Degree and Ph.D. in Social Work and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in North Carolina.

Review:

Dr. Jim Dudley’s Spirituality Matters in Social Work is a welcome addition to the growing number of books and articles in the social work literature focused on preparing social workers to effectively engage spiritual and religious issues in the helping process when they are important to helping their clients. Dr. Dudley’s book explores, in depth, key elements of ethical, spiritually-sensitive social work approaches and strategies in terms of engagement, spiritual assessment, interventions and evaluation. More than most, his book pays attention to the integration of spirituality and religion at micro, mezzo, and macro levels of intervention, as well as the important question of how to determine the effectiveness and impact of spiritually-sensitive programs and practice on the clients it serves.

--Rick Chamiec-Case, North American Association of Christians in Social Work

 

There is a compelling need for clinical guidance concerning the complex issues of spirituality and religion in social work practice. Preparing students through spiritual self-exploration, engagement, assessment, intervention, and even the little considered but essential area of evaluation, this text offers valuable knowledge in an accessible format. It is both wise and wonderful.

–Holly Nelson-Becker, Loyola University Chicago

Fantastic... Dudley not only educates social workers on the integration of clients’ religion and spirituality, but also creates opportunities for the reader to explore his/her personal spiritual beliefs as they relate to practice. This balance of providing content with practicing self-awareness is critical in any helping profession. This book includes practical methods for learning about others’ religious beliefs, maintaining a spiritually-sensitive approach to practice, and identifying assessment tools and spiritual interventions at both the micro and macro levels. I highly recommend this text for both students and practitioners in social work and related helping professions.

--Holly Oxhandler, Baylor University

For far too long, spirituality was neglected in social work and yet it may be a major source of strength for the clients that our students will serve. The focus on spirituality and multiple levels of practice can help students understand the place of spirituality in all levels of practice. I believe this text will benefit both BSW and MSSW students including those who consider themselves to be spiritual and those who do not.

--Melody Loya, West Texas A&M University

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