The author of this response has been asked to describe a target agency within which the author will work and how precisely that work will commence and be executed. Included in that summary will be what the author of this report brings to the therapeutic encounter, the overall helping/therapeutic encounter and the initial formulations that will be employed in used. Before that, the author will describe the agency that will be worked at and what they do. While some may focus derision and disdain on the mentally ill and ambivalent, any person that wants to become or restore themselves as an active member of society should be given the tools and resources to do so.
The agency that will be in question within this report is known as the Center for Urban and Community Services, or CUCS for short. CUCS is a non-profit group that services the poor, the homeless and low-income adults and families. The vast majority of their clients possess some sort of illness or disorder such as general mental illness, HIV / AIDS, alcohol use or dependency and/or other chronic medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and others. The agency provides social services for tenants that reside in an array of transitional or permanent housing sites through the areas of Brooklyn, the Bronx and Manhattan. There are also on-site psychiatric and primary care medical services personnel that are able and willing to treat tenants and community members (CUCS, 2014).
In terms of what the author of this report brings to the CUCS equation, there are several things that immediately come to mind. The author of this report would help the clients of CUCS seek and retain competitive employment despite the challenges they face such as their medical or mental status as well as their ambivalence regarding how others perceive the same. The common obstacles of finding a job are all that much greater when speaking of the CUCS clientele and this would include factors such as getting an interview, having the proper attire to wear to the interview and so forth. The author's particular caseload will include and reference those that are single adults that have been referred by HASA, an AIDS-related program. Others will be referred by Psychiatric Hospital or other agencies that commonly deal with the homeless. The author will make heavy use of motivational interview techniques, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), drawing on the strengths and preferences of the client and building up self-esteem where there are currently insecurities and weaknesses. In general, the author of this report shall use the strengths-based perspective, the life model perspective, the ego psychology/functions perspective and the person in environment perspective (Goldstein, 1995; Woods & Hollis, 2000)
As it relates to the helping/therapeutic encounter, the appendices the specific encounter captured by the author but it will be summarized here. As is surely clear from the process record, there is a method that the author of this report employed. The first meeting and point of contact with a new client is pivotal and important and must not be botched. A relationship of trust and understanding has to be present for therapy or assistance like that offered by CUCS to work (Braucher, 2000). One key to the meetings, especially the first one, is to remain professional and proper (Northen, 1995). The author of this report will greet the person warmly and will immediately assure them that they will be provided with targeted, effective and relevant advice regarding becoming and remaining a productive member of society despite the health and mental challenges that exist. This has to be done if there is resistance in a one-on-one or in a group setting (Ormont, 1993; Teitelbaum, 1991). There will no doubt be apprehension at some level and any verbal or non-verbal cues that present themselves will be addressed immediately. For example, if a patient expresses that they feel that the approach will not yield any positive results, then the author of this report will assure them that many prior patients and people using CUCS have made use of the services and have been able to get and retain employment with great success. The author of this report's general aim for accomplishment centered on putting the client at ease, letting them know that things will go well but that it will take an honest and complete effort on the part of all parties involved, including the client. The author of this report shall commit to and back up the production and display of those attitudes and services and this should induce the patient/client to do the same in kind.
As noted above, the author will be taking and using several approaches that are deeply rooted in the field within which the author of this report shall be working. The first of those approaches, as noted above, was the strengths-based perspective. This is an approach that is tailor-made for people with disabilities and illnesses. It even works on the fairly young as a recent study in 2011 showed that the approach paid specific and tangible dividends with children aged 11 to 13 years old in the Wales section of the United Kingdom. The study looked at whether the use of a strengths-based perspective added to the resilience of the teens in question. The parallels and applicability to patients in the CUCS setting are quite obvious (Doutre, Green & Knight-Elliott, 2013).
The life model perspective points to a process that has several steps. Those steps are preparatory, initial, ongoing and ending phases. The author of this report would be involved in the first two of those phases initially and perhaps the other two as needed. It is quite possible that someone could get a job, become a productive worker and no longer need the services of CUCS. However, regressions and setbacks can and do happen and CUCS will be there for patients if/when that happens. Indeed, the author of this report will be part of that process irrespective of how many times a person has to cycle through the steps and restart the process (Gitterman & Germain, 2008).
Ego psychology also greatly figures into the calculus and strategy that will be employed by the author of this report. Negative responses and outcomes have a tangible and demonstrative effect on people and this goes double for someone that is homeless, has HIV / AIDS or a debilitating mental or medical condition. The key for the author of this report is to give the patient the assistance needed so that they can become and remain self-regulating and thus do not need mental health or medical interventions to exist from one day to the next, at least not to the extent needed upon initial consultation with CUCS (Gao, Zhang, Wang, Xu, Hong & Jiang, 2014).
Of course, a huge part of fitting a person with a job is to find a strong relationship and correlation between the two. In other words, a person's fit for a job should be assessed and measured before trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Indeed, there is a greater amount of measured job satisfaction when there is a link between the job a person engages in and their satisfaction as it relates to the same. Thus, it is important for the author of this report to encourage openness and honesty as the job to person fit will be much more unlikely to mesh if the self-reporting on the part of the client in terms of preferences and experience is lacking or flat-out wrong. However, it is important to note that research shows that needs/supplies fit and demands/abilities fit are not the same thing and should be measured and assessed differently (Hardin & Donaldson, 2014).
Regarding the initial formulations, there are going to be some patterns and usual outcomes that will become obvious. First, the client will need to have their expectations managed and assessed so that they align with reality and common practice. The key is to get the patient riled up and proactive while at the same time not setting up their hopes to be tackled. The client should not have difficulty working with the author of this response but the author of this response has a duty to be honest and open about the process and the challenges that will be faced. The message should be positive but it should be based on prior results and the facts as they exist. So long as the client is on board with being honest and proactive about the process, then there should be no discord or disagreement between the two. However, if the client is down in the dumps and very pessimistic about the outcome, then there might be some challenges. However, the fact that they came forward to use the services of CUCS proves that they are at least willing to try and that should be seized on and taken advantage of.
The potential or even like difficulty in getting the client engaged and keeping them involved stems…