Respond to two of your colleagues’ postings by sharing an insight gained from reading their posts. Share how your perspectives on social change may have changed or your vision on social change may have been confirmed. Share a resource that is related to a social change effort your colleague discussed, and/or offer another perspective on the social change effort they described.
RE: Discussion – Week 1
My vision for social change would be to eliminate homelessness among veterans, women and children. As a veteran myself, I know first-hand how hard it is to acclimate back to the civilian world. It is hard when you have all these programs that are designed to help you but at the same time these programs are also working against you. Most of the reason some veterans are homeless are attributed to mental health that have led them to been incarcerated; there is a shortage of affordable housing; the income you get from said disability is not enough to cover housing expenses expected if you are 100% disabled; then most of the military jobs that the veteran held doesn’t relate to any civilian jobs available. The VA system is backed up with 4-6-month appointment times. My vision for social change would be open a facility that allows me to have rooms available to house the vets, women and children. In this facility, we would have trained social worker advocates that can ensure that these veterans are seen at the VA facility, and ensure the women have a place to stay while they try to find their footing in this world. At this facility, social workers who can act as advocate while taking these veterans to their appointments and make sure that their needs are addressed before they leave the hospital. There would be a daycare center in this facility that allows women to enroll their children who are not school aged so they can go to work or school and better themselves. With hurricane Harvey that caused flooding in some parts of Texas, I couldn’t help to think about the homeless population; I ask what happened to them, are they among the safe people in shelters.
Walden University sees social change as a positive process that is made possible through deliberate efforts that are channeled towards a specific goal. My vision is something I envision but I can’t help others without first understanding what steps I need to accomplish my goals. This where my choice of pursuing a Masters in Human and Social Services at Walden University became important as well as my one step closer to my goal. Walden’s vision of change statement states that it is a “learning community where knowledge is judged rightly, to a degree that it can be applied by its graduates to the immediate solution of critical societal challenges, thereby advancing the greater global good” (Walden University 2015c). This statement of vision change is seen in the curriculum offered in each program especially my own program.
In my El Paso community, there are programs for the homeless but it is not doing nearly enough. There are roughly about 1394 homeless people and that number is only counting those that come to the facility. It doesn’t account for the others that live under the bridge or abandoned buildings downtown. There is estimate 343 children that will sleep at the local shelters each night. That is on a case by case bases because when morning comes, they must go and if they want to sleep they must be there at a certain time to ensure they get a slot. My vision is to change this. Open a facility that can house hundreds where they have their own room/space and not worry about not been there on time to get a slot. What Walden university offers is the first step for me to see my vision come through.
Walden University. (2015c). Scholars of Change. [Multimedia file]. Retrieved from http://www.waldenu.edu/about/social-change/scholars-of-change
Walden University. (n.d.). Mission of change. Retrieved from https://www.waldenu.edu/about
RE: Discussion – Week 1
I would like to obtain a Master of Science in Human Services to enable me to pursue a career in public service. With this degree, I will be able to serve my community and address many grass root problems that can easily fall through the cracks of government, society and social agencies. My personal and professional experiences as well as Walden’s mission for change and to promote positive social change will hopefully complement one another in hopes of achieving both the University and the students’ needs for connecting within our communities and making a positive impact.
Public Service is a very important factor when it comes to bettering society. Through my own personal experiences, professional career, and observations I have come to support and believe my opinion on this issue. Like we are seeing played out over media and in news, Social Injustice, mass incarceration, and Police Brutality are now more prevalent than ever. I would ultimately like to work for a non-profit or social agency that helps felons transition back into the community when they are released from prison or other correctional facilities.
Ex offenders already have strikes against them for carrying the stigma of being an “ex-offender” or “felon.” In addition, a number of laws and collateral sanctions were also passed that penalized offenders, particularly drug offenders, by removing or limiting access to public benefits and opportunities for employment in a variety of occupations. These laws/policies impose barriers to reintegration such as; reducing access to student loans or making them completely ineligible for financial aide, public housing, possibly private housing, employment, and even obtaining a driver’s license. When paired with ever-growing lists of post release supervision conditions, these barriers and the inherent limitations many offenders possess, such as low educational attainment, poor employment histories and substance use, suggest that the challenges ex-prisoners face in “going straight” are impossible in some circumstances to obtain.
For the past 14 years I worked for the Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority, and I have seen first hand how the world can benefit from social agencies, non –profits, and the public sector. The community serves as an important vessel in helping the transition of a person being the property of the state into a productive member of society. When a person serves his or her time they are supposed to have been eradicated from their crime. We expect for them to immediately get a job, have a place to live and adjust to the social norms of society, but that isn’t always the case. I truly believe that it takes a village even in regard to the less desirable members that could potentially reside in all or some of our neighborhoods. With the support of family, social agencies, and the community we can strive to reunite broken families, improve economic conditions, promote self-sufficiency, and increase public safety.