All social workers, regardless of where they practice, will inevitably work with individuals who are facing progressing illness, death, dying, grief and bereavement, according to Deborah Ryan, LCSW, vice president of counseling services at Regional Hospice and Home Care of Western CT. “Social workers help families across the life span, from different cultures and socio-economic statuses as they try to cope with these life-changing challenges,” she says.
Hospice social workers are challenged to provide expertise and skill in direct services to individuals and families through counseling, advocacy and linking them to resources. They also have the opportunity to influence and educate a broad range of professionals and lay persons in the bigger community about the complex intricacies of advancing illness, end-of-life care and bereavement.
“We are grateful and honored to have the exceptional individuals who comprise our social work team in our hospice, bereavement and Healing Hearts programs,” Ryan says. Regional Hospice and Home Care is committed to mentoring those exploring the field of social work and specifically the specialty of hospice and bereavement, which is demonstrated by the presence of our BSW and MSW interns, who are invaluable to us.
The mission of our agency to help others find hope for both physical and emotional comfort in the midst of illness and turmoil complements the National Association of Social Workers’ theme for 2012 of restoring hope to those who have lost it. Real hope for end-of-life care on your own terms, under your control is what Regional Hospice and Home Care of Western CT is all about.