Cluster: Social Work Practice
Ann-Marie Yamada, PhD, University of Southern California , Concepcion Barrio, PhD, University of Southern California and Betty Garcia, California State University, Fresno
Saturday, January 16, 2010: 4:30 PM-6:15 PM
Pacific Concourse M (Hyatt Regency)
Research has documented poor quality of care and outcomes when the importance of cultural factors in mental health services are not considered (Bae, Brekke, & Bola, 2004; Miranda et al., 2003; Phillips, Barrio, & Brekke, 2001; Telles et al., 1995; Young, Klap, Sherbourne, & Wells, 2001). Awareness and knowledge of racial/ethnic disparities in services have not translated directly into culturally responsive policy, psychosocial interventions or services (Yamada & Brekke, 2008). In turn, social work researchers have called for integrating culture into intervention research. The primary objective of this roundtable session is to begin a dialogue about the variety of models, practice frameworks, and strengths-based culturally relevant approaches of social work that can inform and enrich the way interventions are adapted or developed for underserved populations. Participants will be asked to focus particular attention on the fit of social work in the broad interdisciplinary realm of culturally relevant interventions and methodologies such as the public health approach to prevention and outreach and the anthropological emphasis on ethnography. Presenters will review examples based on their experiences with social work practice, teaching, cultural research methods, national professional organizations, and culturally-focused funded research. Presenters will facilitate a dialogue with participants on timely questions such as: 1) Are cultural adaptations of social work interventions needed or are these interventions inherently culturally relevant?; 2) What interdisciplinary principles can guide social work research that aims to adapt interventions for specific groups?; 3) In light of social work's service to underserved populations, what can social workers contribute to the interdisciplinary knowledge-base that provides a foundation for culturally relevant practice and research? The goal of this roundtable is to encourage discussion that probes beyond elementary observations about what constitutes “cultural competent” social work research and practice. The ultimate purpose is to highlight promising strategies for social workers to demonstrate leadership in shaping the development of research to design and test culturally relevant mental health interventions.
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