Post a brief description of an individual, couple, family, or systemic crisis that has affected your community.* Then, explain how you would approach intervention for this crisis from a collaborative standpoint.
The Role of Collaboration in Crisis Intervention
Crises—individual, couple, family, and systemic—are complex and multifaceted. They typically affect people across many different areas of life, as the consequences of any given crisis may include physical, medical, emotional, financial, and/or legal aspects. Thus, effective intervention rarely can be carried out by a single human services professional. Instead, human services professionals must initiate collaborative relationships with professionals from any number of fields. Doctors, nurses, police officers, and lawyers are just a few examples of the types of individuals who might collaborate during a crisis intervention. Moreover, a human service professional likely will coordinate care for his or her client with other human services professionals who specialize in particular types of treatment. For example, a human services professional who works at an emergency shelter following a natural disaster may be the first point of contact for a victim who has lost his or her home. After assessing the client, the human services professional might determine that the client would benefit from therapy with a licensed counselor who has experience in working with natural disaster survivors, and thus refer the client to a colleague with this area of expertise. In addition, the human services professional might contact a representative from a state or federal agency to help the client secure long-term shelter. The human services professional, similarly, might consult a social worker to discuss financial assistance options for the client and his or her family or a doctor or nurse if there are any persistent medical problems. Thus, collaborative crisis intervention is a team effort, involving the participation and cooperation of professionals across multiple fields—all with the common goal of helping a client effectively cope with a crisis in his or her life.
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