Celebrate Social Work Month this March

By Joycelyn Fish
Campus Life Editor
This March, the social work de¬partment and club plan on joining the National Association of Social Workers in celebrating Social Work Month through “Weaving Threads of Resilience and Advocacy: The Power of Social Work.”
The Social Work Club, which works on various volunteer and fundraising activities to benefit the community, will be kicking off awareness a little early by hosting a chili sale on Wednesday, Feb. 27. The club will be selling chili for $3 a cup and $5 for chili, cornbread, and a drink, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. in the Murphy Center lobby with pro¬ceeds going to benefit the La Crosse Warming Center.
Hannah Johnson, president of the Social Work Club and a junior social work major from Owatonna, Minn., hopes the fundraiser brings awareness to the importance of social work.
“Social work is important be¬cause you’re helping people who are in need of assistance,” Johnson explained. “Social workers are able to focus on their strengths and also advocate for people who might not be able to get the help they need by giving them a voice.”
Through job shadowing, Ashley Janovick, a junior social work major form Sparta, Wis., has experienced this first hand.
“My experience shadowing a social worker was outstanding,” Janovick explained. “It reinforced everything I’ve been learning throughout the years in each of my social work classes, even down to the tiny details like using minimal encouragement.”
Jack Rice, a sophomore social work major from St. Paul, Minn., also saw the positive effects of so¬cial work through service learning.
“My service experience at the Boys and Girls Club at the Viterbo Mathy Center was amazing because I got to meet so many great kids that they helped me realize what I want to do with my social work degree,” Rice said. “They were also able to teach me things that I didn’t know about myself and gave me new ways to look at things.”
As part of a department with almost 90 majors, the Social Work Club has reached out to all spec¬trums of the community. This fall, they participated in a walk for Down Syndrome, collected canned goods for a food pantry, and ad¬opted a family at Christmas. This spring, they have plans of partici¬pating in Relay for Life and send¬ing some members to a social work convention in Wisconsin Dells.
“Getting to work with people in the community and make new part¬nerships and friendships and touch the lives of those that you meet is the best part of social work and volunteering,” Rice explained.
Overall, Johnson, Rice, and Janovick all emphasized the importance of being able to touch people’s lives and hope to raise awareness about social work throughout March.
“The most rewarding part of social work is definitely empower¬ing your clients to help themselves and seeing what success looks like for each client and each family,” Janovick said.

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