Event date: 10/4/2023 8:45 AM - 4:00 PM Export event
NASWNH Chapter
/ Categories: Uncategorized

Engaging & Working with the Hard to Reach Client

Engaging & Working with the Hard to Reach Client

Lawrence Shulman, M.S.W., Ed.D

September 27 & October 4, 2023

8:45 am EST - 4:00 pm EST

Register Here: Engaging & Working with the Hard to Reach Client Tickets, Wed, Sep 27, 2023 at 8:45 AM | Eventbrite

Twelve (12) Formal CEs approved by NASW VT, one (1) of which qualifies for cultural competency.

This program has been approved for 12 Continuing Education hours for licensure. NASW VT Authorization Number 1120.

NASW Vermont Chapter is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0683.


In this workshop, participants will consider the dynamics and skills of engaging and working with hard-to-reach individuals, families, and groups. The client will be described as facing a "first decision" - whether or not to accept the need for help and to accept the worker. Discussion will include: dealing with denial in the beginning phase of work; confronting authority issues with mandatory clients (or semi-voluntary clients); creating conditions of trust and safety which allow clients to lower their defenses; challenging the "illusion of work"; understanding resistance and responding to it constructively; dealing with taboo subjects such as physical and substance abuse, sex, death and violence.

Attention will be paid to issues involved in working inter-culturally (working with differences of race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexual orientation, etc.) and intra-culturally (working with persons who are like us). Core skills to facilitate dealing with these practice issues will be identified. The skills include: "tuning in," contracting, elaborating, empathizing, sharing one's own feelings, providing data, and making a demand for work. A premium will be placed upon honesty in relating to clients, the genuineness of the worker's empathy, the worker's capacity to integrate the personal and professional self, and the importance of confrontation and demand.

This workshop will also explore the skills required to work with professionals from other agencies and systems. Problems such as the battle over "who owns the client?" will be explored. Examples in which professionals claim sole responsibility for clients or refuse responsibility to provide services will be examined as illustrations of how inter-professional conflict can have a negative impact on services to clients. The skills for creating more constructive working relationships between individual workers, departments or services will be presented using case examples as illustrations.


Dr. Shulman will conduct the workshop in a presentation and discussion format, inviting workshop participants to join in the discussion. He will use case examples drawn from a wide range of settings and will invite issues and examples from participants. In this way, the theoretical material is close to the daily experiences of participants. Dr. Shulman uses this format with small and large groups developing a supportive and stimulating atmosphere for work.


Lawrence Shulman, M.S.W., Ed.D. is a former Professor of Social Work and Dean at the School of Social Work, the University at Buffalo. He is been leading his own pro-bono direct group work practice, usually with single parents, married couples, students suspended from school for violence, and persons with AIDS in early recovery. He has done extensive research on the core helping skills in social work practice, supervision, and child welfare. Dr. Shulman is used widely as a training consultant in direct practice, family work, group work, supervision, field instruction, administration, residential treatment and the skills of working with other professionals.

He has published numerous articles and monographs on direct practice and is the author of ten books. These include: Dynamics and Skills of Group Counseling, 2011 (available now); The Skills of Helping Individuals, Families, Groups and Communities, 7th Edition, 2011, both by Cengage Publishers; Mutual Aid Groups, Vulnerable and Resilient Populations and the Life Cycle,3rd edition, 2005 (Co-edited with Dr. Alex Gitterman of Columbia University), Columbia University Press.

Dr. Shulman was the author of the entry on supervision and consultation in the last three editions of the Social Work Encyclopedia, published by the National Association of Social Workers. He has also authored a book entitled Interactional Supervision, 3rd edition, which was published in 2010 by the National Association of Social Workers Press.

Dr. Shulman has been a proud member of NASW since 1961

Register Here: Engaging & Working with the Hard to Reach Client Tickets, Wed, Sep 27, 2023 at 8:45 AM | Eventbrite

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