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  • vasilios ioakimidis

Practising social work in Palestine (new article)

David Harrop (BASW) and I have been researching the experiences of Palestinian Children and Family Social Workers over a number of years. Our research, which has been supported by the Palestine-UK Social Work Network, focuses on the extraordinary, grassroots and creative methodologies Palestinian social workers develop in order to safeguard children in a context of systematic and institutionalised violence.

Recently, part of our research was published by the European Journal of Social Work. The title of our article is: Practising social work in a ‘stateless state’; an exploration of the views, experiences and practice of children and family social workers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem


In over 65 years of conflict that followed the creation of Israel and the subsequent occupation of Palestinian land, the official international organizations representing the profession of social work have been in a state of avoidance with regards to dealing with crucial questions about social work under occupation. Until, last year hardly any relevant statement could be traced in the archives of the International Federation of Social Workers and the International Association of Social Workers referring to this issue. This article attempts to provide an initial exploration of the views and every-day professional lives of children and family social workers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The authors investigate and reflect on the challenges and opportunities Palestinian social workers face while working in the context of military conflict. There is a particular focus on the impact of the occupation of Palestinian lands and the experiences of trauma affecting children who seek the support of social services.

You may find the full article here:

If you are interested in social work in Palestine and cannot have access to the journal, contact me and I will send you a full copy of the article.

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