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1. What kind of group would you be most interested in forming? Why?
The issue of substance abuse among teenagers or adolescents has a prevalent issue in most communities around the globe. It is essential for approaches to dealing with the issue to be developed. In regards to this notion, it is essential to create a human service group to enable this population to live a healthy and productive life. A group that I would be most interested in forming is a social mobilization group.
The main aim of this group would be to bring individuals together and raise awareness of the negative effect of substance use among the teenage population and young adults. The social mobilization group will be used to educate the community as well as the affected teenagers on understanding how individuals develop substance abuse. Further, through social mobilization, the community will be able to understand how the frequent abuse of drugs influences issues linked to mental illness and other related risk factors. In addition, the social mobilization group will work closely with local community leaders, religious leaders, health care providers, and the general public to offer rehabilitation services to the victims of substance use (Desai & Falco, 2015).
A significant advantage of developing this social mobilization group is that it will allow every member of the community to participate in the elimination of substance abuse issues actively. Also, it will ensure health education and healthcare services are provided to the targeted group. In general, the social mobilization group will focus on helping teenagers and young adults meet their needs rather than focusing on altering them.
2. How might you modify the group structure to fit the needs of members you are interested in attracting?
Teenagers and young adults are often in a stage of life where there are developing changes, physically, biologically and emotionally. A significant population of the targeted group tends to be rebellious due to the changes in their bodies. As a result, they are not able to identify when they get addicted to substance usage. To effectively meet the goal of the developed social mobilization group, it is essential to develop an appropriate approach that tends to effectively fit the various personal and social needs of the individuals in the targeted group.
To modify the group structure to fit the needs of the members, we will need to incorporate different activities that interest teenagers and young adults. These activities include musical concerts, art, talent shows, and sporting activities, among others. These activities will allow the social mobilization to effectively connect with the targeted group and be able to develop approaches that will help them limit their substance abuse.
Diversity is a crucial aspect of social mobilization as it allows the social group to offer assistance to a wider audience of people within and outside the community. To ensure that the group has a culturally diverse group, various aspects have to be put in place. The group will incorporate individuals from different cultural backgrounds. Further, the social mobilization group may hold cultural events which will enable the targeted group to have an adequate understanding of the various cultural beliefs of their peers, which will allow them to embrace their differences.
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Every social mobilization group tends to have specific goals that it needs to achieve. The proposed group’s primary goal is to promote awareness to facilitate the reduction of substance abuse among teenagers and young adults. However, for the proposed group to achieve its ultimate goals, several specific skills will need to be implemented (Rawson & Obert, 2013). These skills include leadership skills, teamwork skills, communication skills as well as social interaction skills.
` Communication skills involve having the ability to share and convey feelings and ideas effectively. Having excellent communication skills will allow the targeted group to open up and speak up about their issues. Teamwork skills involve having the ability to work effectively in the proposed group. These skills will ensure that the group feels like a family where everyone cooperates and assist each other in achieving their goals.
Having leadership skills means possessing the ability to direct the proposed group towards achieving their goals. This is an essential skill because it ensures that the group is headed in the right direction. Having social interaction skills will ensure that the proposed group has proper communication and interaction. Lack of this skill might lead to social awkwardness in the proposed group. I believe I possess these skills, but I will need to attain some training to polish the skills in order for the proposed group to be effective.
2. What major potential problems do you anticipate you will encounter facilitating your group? How might you deal with this challenge?
The group is bound to encounter some significant potential problems (Desai & Falco, 2015). One of these problems is a lack of participation from the targeted group because they may feel that they are being attacked due to being substance abusers. Based on this issue, it will need the social mobilization staff to clearly define the purpose of the group and the benefits it is desired to bring to the targeted population. This will enable the targeted population to embrace the social mobilization group and its related activities appropriately.
Another issue would arise from the drug dealers and suppliers. They might start spreading false information about the group, which may deter the targeted population from fully participating. A way of dealing with this issue and others that may arise is by holding forums to engage, educate and inspire the community. The goal of this is to generate awareness, motivate action as well as keep the community focused on the issue.
3. What are some ways to combine research and practice to enhance your skills and practical applications on group work?
A major approach that can be used to combine research and practice is the use of evidence-based research. Evidence-based research may be described as the utilization of previous research in a transparent and systematic approach to inform a new study so that the questions that may arise may be answered in a valid, accessible, and efficient manner. This approach will allow me to review various researches conducted on the appropriate leadership skills, communication skills, teamwork skills, and social interaction skills are effectively implemented to achieve the ultimatum goal. Further, through evidence-based research, I may be in a better position to adequately understand various challenges that I may experience with the group, as well as have an idea of how to resolve these challenges.
Rawson, R. A., & Obert, J. L. (2013). Relapse prevention groups in outpatient substance abuse treatment. The Group Therapy of Substance Abuse, 121-138. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781439807125-7
Two theoretical perspectives that can be used in the interventions in our group are functionalist and symbolic interactionist theories. The two theoretical perspectives are suitable for the group interventions following their aims and objectives. The group interventions involve the actions toward reducing substance use among teenagers. Functionalist and symbolic interactionist theories form better perspectives as they better understand the relationship between humans and society. The group aims at taking actions with necessary skills to manage the encroaching teenage drug misuse in the society.
The functionalist theory focuses on the stability and the functioning of society as a whole. Through the group interventions, it is possible to engage this theory in taking practical actions in rehabilitating teenagers. The maintenance of better standards that will bring together group aims and society's expectations are linked to the roles in the institution (Crossman, 2020). Through the use of the learned skills, this perspective allows for the recruiting of measures towards the improvement of our rehabilitation center.
Symbolic interactionist theory, on the other hand, offers the understanding and recognition of human and nature relations by the use of communication strategies. These theories guide the actions towards our group's alignment and purpose through enhancing our skills. First, understanding the relationship between the risks associated with psychological impacts of substance abuse and societal norms that form the nature of actions (Crossman, 2020). Drug and substance use requires a greater understanding of the societal norms and expectations to incorporate effective measures. The basics of learning and dispensing information, achieved through communication skills, is a significant intervention guided by the symbolic interactionist theory.
In conclusion, the impact of the two theoretical perspectives on the influence on the group's interventions is critical. The perspectives create a more detailed understanding of the strategies that help deal with teenagers and functional takes towards achieving the desired objectives.
Crossman, A. (2020, January 22). Understanding Theoretical Perspective and How Sociologists Use It. ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/theoretical-perspectives-3026716#:~:text=A%20theoretical%20perspective%20is%20a
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