The Relevance of Informal Caring Networks in Community Social Work.

1627 Words7 Pages
Informal caring networks are of fundamental importance in assessing the on-going needs of clients and their carers, and in service planning. The presence of an informal carer is often a key indicator of a person's ability to remain at home, especially if the person requires assistance. The absence of an informal carer, where a vulnerable client lives alone, is an indicator of client risk. Information on client living arrangement and informal carer availability provides an indicator of the potential in-home support and the extent to which the burden of care is absorbed by the informal caring system. In this essay the terms community social work and informal caring networks will be defined and the paper will also discuss the relevance of informal caring networks in community social work. The Barclay report (1982) defines community social work as formal social work which started from problems affecting individuals and groups and the responsibilities of resources of social work departments and voluntary organisations seeks to take in to support ,enable the underpin the local networks of formal and informal relationships which constitutes a basic definition of community. An informal caring network includes any person, such as a family member, friend or neighbour, who is giving regular, ongoing assistance to another person without payment for the care given. In this context, the carers are unpaid other than pension or benefit .They play a critical role in community services provision, especially in caring for frail aged and younger people with disability within the community. Until recently, unpaid care provided by relatives, neighbours and friends Informal care had been overlooked or taken for granted by policy-makers in the context of long-term care provided to dependent older people. A certain amount of informal care is nevertheless essential in filling the gaps
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