The Minister of Health for Tanzania in East Africa has said that social work has an essential role to play in creating meaningful change in the lives of people who are vulnerable, helpless and voiceless. He assured the Tanzania Association of Social Workers (TASWO) that the government is keen to support the formulation of a Social Work Bill which would recognise and regulate the profession.
Dr Hussein Mwinyi was speaking at the Professional Social Work Conference of the Tanzania Association of Social Workers (TASWO) which opened on 16 October 2012 in Dar es Salaam.
The Acting Chairperson of TASWO, Dr Zena Mabeyo, told the Minister that the lack of a regulatory council and of an explicit social welfare policy were major stumbling blocks to the development of the social work profession in Tanzania. The Minister congratulated TASWO for spearheading initiatives for the betterment of the social work profession and the welfare of Tanzanian society, as reported in the Tanzanian Daily News.
Among the professional issues on the conference agenda were the rights of people with albinism, social work with HIV/AIDS affected and infected children and families, the art of therapy in addressing psycho-social problems of children and the problem of substance abuse.
The meeting is sponsored by the USA President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and CDC Tanzania through the American International Health Alliance (AIHA), a key partner in health systems strengthening in the country.
The President of the US National Association of Social Workers (NASW), Ms Jeane Anastas, participated in the conference, building on the twinning programme of mutual support agreed between the two associations. Speaking at a press conference before the conference, Ms Anastas noted the tremendous progress in social work in Tanzania.
TASWO and NASW leaders have met several times in Tanzania and the USA. Both TASWO and NASW are active members of IFSW. The priority themes of the conference are included within The Global Agenda for Social Work and Social Development, being promoted by IFSW and our global partners.
Read press report here
Read about the TASWO and NASW twinning agreement here
Read about the American International Health Alliance/HIV/AIDS Twinning Center here
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