Indeed there is a real and urgent need for improvement, as the challenges facing social work today are enormous. Despite an impressive degree of diligence, professionalism, excellence, compassion and care displayed by most certified social workers of today, it is generally felt that social services sector in the UK is not delivering its full potential.
As the scope and extent of social work evolves, there seems to be a rekindled interest in the discussion about its nature. This is reflected in the two major conferences held already this year at Nottingham Trent and Liverpool universities, attended by thousands of social workers and social work students (Jones, 2006).
Also notable is the fact that the membership of the British Association of Social Workers is constantly growing. BASW's public and media profile is undergoing an enhancement, even as the association continues to champion the contribution that social workers make to the society. BASW is also increasingly commenting on the policy and practice issues that particularly relate to the roles and tasks of social workers. Of late, BASW has been vehemently challenging policies that negatively impact on asylum seekers and users of mental health services.
Social work has changed greatly since the early days of philanthropists and 'do-gooders'. ...