Crisis situations happen all the time to people in all walks of life. Whether it’s the sudden loss of loved one, medical or mental health issues, or falling victim to criminal activity, situations can arise that push people to their emotional, mental, and physical limits.
When they do, community service workers (CSWs) can offer invaluable support to people during some of toughest times in their lives. Through their work in facilities like group homes, human service agencies, and social service programs, CSWs can offer clients the help they need to rebuild their lives and come through their difficulties as stronger people.
But how should a CSW approach a crisis situation? Here are some of the most valuable things you should know about crisis management, and some common techniques experienced community service workers use:
A Guide To Crisis Intervention And Its Role in Your CSW Career
Crisis intervention techniques are the methods CSWs use to offer immediate help to people who experience situations that causes them to feel as though they can no longer cope. Depending on the area you end up working in when you become a community services worker, some crisis situations you encounter could include natural disasters, sexual assault or perhaps individuals struggling to cope with relationship changes, such as divorce. In the crisis intervention process, CSWs will assess the situation, look to calm clients down, and use problem solving techniques to deal with their situation.
Reacting To A Client Crisis When You Become A Community Service Worker
Being faced with a client who is dealing with a serious crisis can be overwhelming, particularly in the early stages of your CSW career. The first thing to do is understand the full extent of the situation. If the person is any immediate danger, such as a victim of domestic abuse, you will need to guide them to safety, and assess whether you need the help of police or medical professionals.
Even in less urgent situations, it is still important to listen and understand the trauma you’re dealing with. Individual reactions to crises can vary, and trying to put yourself in the client’s shoes will help you figure out the best approach. You should also assess the client’s state of mind, coping skills, and the social support network available to them.
Crisis Response Techniques You’ll Learn In Community Service Worker Courses
A key element of crisis intervention is education. When faced with an individual in crisis, it’s important to let them know that their reactions are normal and that they are temporary. CSWs will also explore coping strategies with clients, such as relaxation techniques, or encouraging them to write down their feelings on paper.
CSWs will then discuss problem solving techniques with clients, developing plans of action to remedy the crisis. A crisis experience can also be a learning opportunity for the client, showing them how they managed to get through the situation and giving them tools to cope with problems in the future. Community service worker courses also teach more specific methods for particular crisis situations, such as suicide intervention and addictions intervention.
Are you interested in a career helping people in crisis situations?
Visit NAHB for more information or to speak to an advisor.