The topic for Day 6 was on “Conflict”. The subject seems to be a constant challenge facing social workers in all client systems especially in communities. Our discussion started on the type of conflicts moving on to the type of persons that should deal with conflict, response or personal ways of addressing conflict and resolution to conflicts. Several topics on dispute resolution especially alternative dispute resolution were also discussed. After the discussion we were then divided into 3 groups and given a small conflict scenario wherein we were asked to act it out in a role-play exhibiting the wrong way and the proper way in resolving conflict.
The next topic was on advocacy and partnership building especially with non-government organizations and companies with corporate social responsibility. (CSR) After the lecture our batch mates from the Department of Social Welfare and development (DSWD) gave us an overview of the DSWD’s National community driven Development program. This is the latest DSWD program to develop the infrastructure of the poorest barangays in the country. DSWD already has a lot of program up and running and it would seem that they are everywhere doing almost everything but is there really and end to it all ? What is the long term plan, vision and overall strategy. So they discussed the convergence strategy of DSWD which the dubbed as “TATSULO.”
The presentation features how the current DSWD’s three major current programs such as Pantawid (4 Ps)-Kalahi Seeds, NCCDP, sustainable livelihood program, SLP all come together to produce the intended “synergy” (or what they desire that the the sum of the parts become greater than the whole) Being a whole brain thinker, I really appreciated this presentation as it gives me an overview of the DSWD’s overall strategy and makes me appreciate each individual programs. While it is true that the DSWD is not a perfect government agency as is any organization and there might be lapses here in there, but I assure you the system is up and running. At least the DSWD has an overall strategy. I just hope our countrymen will be informed about this and will appreciate the DSWD’s efforts more instead of merely criticizing without actually knowing in detail. (Such as the 4Ps which has been labeled as a “band aid” solution a labeling which I do not agree to)
Our last lecture, Day 7 was short but very interesting. Sir Zanoria talked discussed about Social entrepreneurship. Foreign and local examples were cited. The most successful foreign program with regards to this is probably Gramin Bank while local examples cited were Joey Concepcion’s Go Negosyo and Bam Aquino’s social entrepreneurship programs. The last topic was on corporate social responsibility which I can really relate to coming from the business sector.
The last day of the workshop will be spent doing field work, visiting people’s organizations and learning from them. Unfortunately I cannot join our batch (batch 5) in this because I have to go to the northern part of Cebu to do some developmental anthropology (I joined the field trip of the next batch in order for me to complete the requirements and get my certificate)
Overall the 1 week lectures and activities has been very informative, fun filled and exciting. It makes me appreciate the work that social workers and the DSWD is doing. It gave me an overview on Social work as a profession and teached me the tools of community organizing and development.
But will I pursue a career in Social work ? This course can be credited as a 3 unit in the Master’s of Social work program in the University of Souther Philippine foundation. Wso, will I pursue my studies regarding this matter ? As of now I would have to say no. Of course I desire to help people and I am involved in multiple activities in providing intervention to help people and communities, but I do not see myself pursuing a full time career in social work since my first love is archaeology and cultural anthropology, but I am still happy that I took this certificate course on community organizing and development.
However I might be able to use this knowledge in community organizing in our church as aside from fulfilling the great commission of making disciples for Jesus Christ, I believe that we can become more effective in fulfilling the great commission if we as a church get involved in community work. I believe in a more holistic approach to missionary work primarily dealing with the spiritual at first but then introducing programs that will uplift the physical, emotionally, social, psychological and all other aspects of the lives of individuals, family life and community life while integrating spiritual and traditional values along the way.
Further, who knows might be able to use this in the future or as a polymath draw inspiration from this in order to solve real world problem from a multidisciplinary approach.