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News Items – September 8, 2022

Jessie Wolf is a member:
Awareness, intervention help prevent suicide
Mayo Clinic
Suicide affects people from all walks of life, cultures and socioeconomic statusesSuicide rates increased by 30% from 2000 to 2018. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for people ages 10–14 and 25–34. However, suicide is preventable. Most people want to live. But they can’t see alternative solutions and feel stuck because of how dire their situation feels. For many people, their ability to reason and problem-solve positive solutions is affected, resulting in impulsive decision-making.

Doris Helmering is a member:
Stop the Spending
I saw a couple in therapy who went on three vacations in one year — Hawaii, Colorado, and Florida — and they can’t pay their bills. They are maxed out on most of their credit cards, and they have gotten into the rut of using one card to pay another. She has student loans from years ago, and he owes his parents, his friends, his dentist, his doctor, and the plumber.

Bhanu Harrison is a member:
A Path to Well-Being: Understand and Face Trauma
We may collectively be experiencing some form of post-traumatic stress after enduring a spate of mass shootings, a global pandemic, and other significantly agonizing experiences that have gripped the world throughout the past few years. “Many people suffer from functional PTSD, which is like, ‘Yeah, this stuff has happened, but I’m moving on,’” explains Bhanu Joy Harrison, a licensed clinical social worker who specializes in mindful approaches to trauma resolution. When trauma isn’t clinically diagnosed and professionally treated, it still can manifest as moodiness, anxiety, anger, addictive tendencies, or depression.

Allison Becker is a member:
How might abortion restrictions impact child welfare in WNC?
Mountain Xpress
Based on personal experience, however, a licensed clinical social worker who provides therapy for Henderson County foster children and their foster families believes the child welfare system will be strained. “My gut feeling — and obviously there’s no research to back this up because it’s so new — is that our [child welfare] system is already severely overtaxed and is going to be even more overtaxed” due to abortion restrictions, Allison Becker tells Xpress.

Barbara Jones is a member:
Social Workers as Leaders on Palliative Care Teams: A Podcast with Barbara Jones
On today’s podcast, we are talking with Barbara Jones – a national hospice and palliative care social work leader whose many accolades include being a founding member of the Social Work in Hospice and Palliative Care Network (SWHPN), a Professor of Direct Social Work Practice and Associate Dean for Health Affairs at the Steve Hicks School of Social Work at UT Austin. Barbara highlights social workers’ inherent leadership qualities and tasks us to consider whether our own team and organizational structures are allowing for optimal social work engagement and influence. Whether in direct practice or in research and academia, we should work together to help Hospice and Palliative Care Social Work meet its full potential.

Jean Rowe is a member:
When a friend is diagnosed with breast cancer
When a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, it can be one of the most frightening times in her life. When she shares this information with her family and friends, it is often difficult for them to know what to say or what to do to help support her. “You don’t have to know what to say,” says Jean Rowe, a licensed clinical social worker and certified oncology social worker who works as the associate director of survivorship programs for Young Survival Coalition (YSC). Rowe suggests being honest with a statement such as,  ‘I don’t know what to say. I don’t know what to do, but I want to help.’” She says that will mean so much more than not saying anything or simply disappearing.

Carrie Syvertsen is a member:
Seattle teachers strike, halting first day of school
The Seattle Times
At Tuesday’s rally, Carrie Syvertsen talked about what it’s like to be the only social worker at Robert Eagle Staff Middle School, which has about 700 students. The National Association of Social Workers recommends 1 social worker for every 250 students. Syvertsen has an active weekly caseload as well as drop-in hours for students in crisis. She often finds herself helping students overcome barriers and explaining students’ mental health needs to teachers. While she works with counselors at the Seattle middle school to somewhat split up the work, mental health support staffing isn’t close to where it should be, she said.

Brooke Schwartz is a member:
7 Grounding Techniques To Try For Anxiety, According To Experts
Grounding can help people, “redirect away from unwanted internal experiences (such as anxiety, flashbacks and thoughts) by connecting to the ‘now,’ usually by tapping into your five senses or by engaging in mental exercises,” adds Brooke Schwartz, a psychotherapist and licensed clinical social worker in Los Angeles.

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