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MSWPG7107 – Social Work – Younis Case Study Assessment

MSWPG7107 – Social Work with Children, Young People and Families

MSWPG7107 Assessment 3 Marking Guide –

Assessment Task 3 – Case Study Analysis: Legislation, policy and multidisciplinary approaches to integrated practice. Group Assessment Report 4000-4500 words (40%):

This task assesses the ability of a small group to examine a case study of a family with complex needs and demonstrate how social work professionals from different areas of practice and service contexts, guided by different policy, practice and legislative frameworks, might work together to best support the family.

Assessment criteria:

  • Identification of appropriate practice frameworks, legislative frameworks and policies that inform or guide the practice of the varied social work roles within your team
  • Clear understanding of the differing priorities for the varied social work roles within your team
  • Evidence of a family-centred approach
  • Identification of the strengths and challenges of working as part of a team
  • Clear, coherent and logical expression
  • Appropriate use of references and accurate reference style

 

Assessment Task 3 – Case Study Analysis

Setting:

The agency is a family services provider, situated in an outer suburb of Melbourne. Caseworkers are employed in this agency to provide family support to  local families and help connect them to appropriate community programs or services, based on identified needs.

Referral:

Your Agency has received a referral for the Younis family. The referral has been sent through by Child FIRST, Melbourne.

Genogram of Younis family:

MSWPG7107

Referral Information:

The referral sheet sent by Child FIRST has provided your agency with the following preliminary information:

  • The Younis family have recently re-located from an inner suburb of Melbourne. The family’s re-location was primarily driven to access cheaper housing, where Mohammed could transfer his employment. Mohammed and Benazir were also concerned about their eldest daughter Asma, who had been engaging in the recreational drug scene,has also had prior involvement with the police.
  • Child FIRST were engaged with the Younis family to provide parenting support and appropriate interventions, as a result of reported family conflict and Mohammed and Benazir’s difficulty in managing Asma’s challenging behaviours.
  • Child FIRST have referred to your agency to help support the Younis family transition into their new community and provide relevant support, based on your ongoing assessment.

31/8- Phone call to the CHILD FIRST caseworker, Jenny, to receive a handover:

Jenny advises she had worked with the family for about 6 months before they moved.  She said they were initially referred by Child Protection after Mohammed had hit Asma.  She said Benazir and Mohammed are nice people but ineffective parents.“Asma was running wild, not going to school, staying out late, maybe having sex and certainly smoking dope.  She got hooked in with a pretty rough crew, a bit older than her, and it came to a head when she was involved in a street fight where one of her friends pulled a knife and another kid got badly cut.  They had been smoking and drinking, and the police told her parents that the kids she was with were heavily into drugs and Asma needed to get out of that group. Mohammed and Benazir found the house up your way and they moved pretty quickly.”

I asked about the other kids.  “Well Badriya’s definitely got an eating or hormonal disorder.  Have you seen the size of her?  Benazir said she raids the fridge, but she also feeds her lots of junk food.  I tried to get her to see a doctor but she wouldn’t do it.  I reckon she’s pretty spoilt.  She’s Benazir’s favourite.  Wasim is a good soccer player and seems to stay out of trouble.  He likes to call himself Wayne.  I think he’s trying to distance himself from his Pakistani background, or at least maybe trying to join in more with the Aussie kids.” Jenny advisesMawra wasn’t properly toilet trained and cited concerns around her development.

Jenny said she didn’t have much to do with Mohammed.  “He left it to Benazir.  She gets pretty despondent because Mohammed blames her when things go wrong.  She had a lot of support from her sisters down here.  I’ll bet she’s missing them now.  Benazir came from a very close Pakistani family and I reckon she’ll be very lonely up your way.”

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1/9 Home Visit:

Initial contact following an introductory phone call to the Younis household. I met with Benazir at her home. She said she only had 20 minutes to talk because she had to pick up Mawra from kinder.  Benazir advised Mohammed and the other kids are at work and school.  “At least I hope Asma’s at school.  She went this morning but she often just checks in then disappears for the day.  I don’t know what I’m gonna do with her.”

Benazir told me they had been here about two months.  I asked how she was settling in.  Benazir expressed that although she initially felt moving here would be a good change, she is now unsure. She reports missing the city, where she has family who are supportive. Benazir expressed that Mohamed tends to pre-occupy his time with work and that he is often disengaged with the day to day running of the household.

I asked if the kids helped.  “No.  Asma’s doing her own thing, she’ll do what she wants to do and we can’t stop her. Wasim loves soccer and goes to training a few nights.  Badriya and Mawra are too young.”

We spoke briefly about her life, Benazir reports she met and married Mohammed when she was 17 and they have Australian citizenship. They are both Muslim, but religion does not play a big part in their lives.  Benazir reports she used to be involved with a Muslim women’s group in Dandenong and enjoyed the more social aspect that came with being part of the group.

At this point in conversation Benazir advised that she would need to pick up Mawra from kindergarten, however was agreeable to further engagement. Permission was also granted to contact Asma’s school and advise of my involvement and ascertain if they had any concerns.

2/9 Phone Call to welfare coordinator, Asma’s school:

Contact with welfare coordinator, Demi, who advised she didn’t know much about Asma and that student welfare had not been involved.  She checked the records and found some erratic attendance and a couple of detentions for misbehaviour in class and smoking in the school yard.  She said Wasim’s attendance and behaviour had not been a problem.

3/9 – Phone call received from local primary school:

Call received from Mr. Gibbs, principal of Badriya’s school.  He said he had been talking to Demi from the secondary college and Demi told him I was involved with the family.  Mr. Gibbs said: “I’m concerned about Badriya.  She’s a big kid, and I mean big.  She’s bordering on obese I think.  It’s a worry because she can’t join in even the easiest physical activities.  Walking any distance is a problem, so she tends to get left out.  The kids are starting to tease her a bit and we’re onto that, but she still knows.  She’s got one friend from another Pakistani family, but that’s all.”

5/9- Phone call received from Benazir:

Benazir sounded almost hysterical and spoke very quickly.  She managed to tell me Asma went missing on the weekend.  I offered to come around straight away.

5/9 – Home Visit:

A man who introduced himself as Mohammed met me and let me in.  Benazir appeared visibly distressed. Mohammed advised Asma went out Saturday night and hasn’t come home. The family have repeatedly contacted her mobile, however no answer. Benazir has also contacted her family in Melbourne and report they have not seen her.

Mohammed left the room. During his absence, Benazir disclosed that Mohammed is not coping with Asma’s behaviour. “Asma is his favourite.  She doesn’t look like the rest of us.  She’s got blonde hair and pale skin.  Most people think she’s Australian.  Well she is Australian, but you know what I mean.  Our people come from Pakistan and we are proud of that.  Mohammed always used to say he wished people would give us a fair go.  He said he had a rough time when he first arrived here and couldn’t speak English very well, but he worked hard and now he’s got a good job.  He reckons it’s getting worse for Muslim people though.  He feels like people he meets are suspicious of him.  Asma looks Aussie, and he thinks she’ll do well.  That’s one reason he wanted to come here, to get away from his background.  It really hurt him when Asma stopped being his little girl.  That’s why he hit her I reckon.  He didn’t know what else to do to stop her playing up, and he used to say he was losing his little girl.”

Asma returned home one hour into my visit. She appeared to dismiss the distress her unexplained absence from the family home had caused her parents and proceeded to walk to her room and slammed the door. Despite my attempts to engage with her, Asma refused and became insistent and shouting that I leave her alone. I left a note, advising Asma of my role and my contact details, encouraging her to call, if needed.

6/9- Phone call from Asma:

Phone call from Asma-  “Hey, I got your note.  Can I talk to you without mum and dad knowing?” I agreed, however cautioned Asma that if there was a risk to her, I will need to let people know. Asma said she understood that and we made an appointment next day in my office.

7/9- Office Interview with Asma:

Asma came in on time and in her school uniform.  She said she had left for school but hadn’t gone.  She said she didn’t want to go back there.  I asked why and Asma reported feeling isolated and unable to make friends here. She expressed wanting to go back to Melbourne.  “I want you to help me either get a place or maybe stay with my aunty Laila.  She’s cool.  She understands.”

I asked what was driving Asma away from home.  She said, “Look, it’s complicated.  I used to like being at home in Dandenong.  Then some bad shit happened and dad decided we had to get out.  That’s cos he didn’t know what else to do, and mum hasn’t got a clue.  They don’t understand what it’s like to be growing up these days.  Aunty Laila does.”  I asked what it would take for her parents to understand.  “Bloody brain transplant might help,” was Asma’s reply.  “Look, dad lives in his own world and just expects us all to behave the way he wants.  He’s been brought up the Pakistani way, where the husband is the boss and he expects everybody does what he says.  Mum tries hard, but she’s never been a strong person.  She gives in to whatever Badriya asks for, she doesn’t know what to do about Mawra pissing her pants, and I can’t talk to her about anything that matters like I can to Aunty Laila.”

I suggested to Asma that we meet with her parents and talk it through.  Asma said she would do it, but added “if it doesn’t work out I’m gone you know.”

9/9- Home Visit:

Mohammed had agreed to come home early for a family meeting.  Benazir said Wasim was at soccer.  She gave Badriya and Mawra a big bag of chips and coke and sent them off to watch TV.  I advised the reason for our meeting. Asma looked uncomfortable, but said firmly:  “I want out of here.  I want to live my own life, and this place gives me the shits.”  Benazir began sobbing and turned away while Mohammed took a deep breath and said, “What, aren’t we good enough for you anymore Asma?  You know I work hard for the family.  What more do you want?”

Over the next half hour, Asma explained that she wants to be back in Melbourne with her old friends.  She feels excluded and doesn’t like the school or the community here.  She said “Youse used to be good parents when I was young, but you don’t know what my life is like now and you never will.”

Mohammed put his side of the story saying he had only made decisions that he thought would keep Asma and the family safe and give them a good future. Mohammed was firmly encouraging for Asma to reconsider staying here longer. “It will be great here, you need to work hard, go to university and become a doctor”.

I invited Benazir to speak.  She said, “Asma, you know your father and I would do anything for you, but we can’t let you go back alone.  How could we sleep not knowing what is happening to you?  Ask yourself, how can a parent do that?  I know I’m not doing a very good job.  I really miss my family in Melbourne.  My sisters used to tell me what to do.  No-one in our family has had a family break up.  That’s not who we are.  You won’t do this to us.”

Throughout her parents’ talking, Asmawas observed to hold her head down, eyes downcast.  When they had finished, she said:  “Mum, I’ll go and live with aunty Laila.  That way you’ll know I’m OK and I’ll still be in the family.”  Mohammed shook his head and said, “How will that look to everyone.  They’ll know we’ve failed.  I won’t be able to hold my head up with them.  And what about your education?”

It had been a long session. I suggested we all spend some time thinking about what had been discussed and that we come back in a few days to review our options.  I also suggested we needed to know if Aunty Laila was an option, and asked who should call her, with Benazir recommending that she contacts her sister.

10/9- Phone call to Benazir:

Benazir advised she had rung Laila.  She said Laila had not been surprised, because Asma had seen her last weekend in Melbourne and talked about it then.  Laila said she had thought it over and discussed it with her husband, and they agreed they could not have Asma.  Laila has offered to have Asma on occasional weekends, but they weren’t going to be able to take her full time, and didn’t want to be interfering in Benazir’s family.

Benazir added that Laila had told her that Asma had arrived at her home at 3am last Sunday morning.  She was quite upset and she had either been drinking or taking drugs because she was slurring her words.  Laila had put her to bed, and in the morning she woke her up at 10am.  Asma told her something terrible and then ran from the home crying and upset.  Laila said she had been very worried, but Asma had rung her to say she was OK and had gone home, and asked her not to tell anyone about how she was that night or what she had told her.

Benazir said Asma had not believed when she told AsmaLaila would not take her in, but then Asma rang Laila herself and heard it from her.  The last couple of days Asma had been quiet.  She has not been back to school.  Benazir thinks the talk with Asma may have made her re-think.  She thinks there is a chance that Asma might give it a go at home if some changes are made, but Mohammed said he thinks Asma is just waiting for the right moment and could run away.

We agreed to meet as a family group again by the end of the week.

13/9- Meeting with Mohammad, Benazir and Asma:

We met as agreed to review the situation.  Benazir confirmed her discussion with Laila.  Both Mohammad and Benazir said they want Asma to stay with them and they will try to make things better for her.  Asma said:  “well I haven’t got much choice have I.”  I asked Asma if there was anything else she wanted to tell the family.  Asma was very quiet and started to cry. Asma eventually informed her parents that she was pregnant.  Mohammad started yelling at Asma, “You have disgraced this family, who is the father?  You must get married”.  Asma informs Mohammad that the father is a loser and does not want anything to do with her or the child.  Mohammad, still upset started yelling about being a failure and that his reputation was ruined, that the family was ruined.  Benazir was crying uncontrollably and could not speak.  I suggested that Asma stay with her Aunty Laila for a few nights to allow the family time to settle.  The family agreed with this plan and I organised for transportation for Asma to her Aunty’s home.  We negotiated another meeting in three days’ time.

14/9- Phone call from aSocial Worker from the Youth Recovery care team (Mental Health) at the local hospital:

The Social Worker advised that Asma’s parents had asked her to call and report that Asmahas been involuntarily admitted to hospital under the care of the Youth recovery care team. This relates to concerns about Asma’s mental health which has included suicidal thoughts and plans. Asma is currently being assessed.

Impatient Mental  Health Social Worker:- I shivanBindra will act as a Impatient Mental Health Social Worker (Youth) and my role is to assess Asma as the ompatientmaental health social worker, the risk and determine appropriate discharge options from the hospital settings.

SOCIAL WORKER ROLES

Agency Setting Title Role Description
Family Services Child FIRST Case Worker You are currently the primary contact in this case. As the child FIRST worker your role is focused on supporting the family until further services can be introduced.  You will utilise the best interest’s framework to assist in your decision making.

Family ServicesFamily supportWorkerAs the Family support worker your role is to provide support to  local families, including short term counselling and help connect them to appropriate community programs or services.

HospitalInpatient Mental Health Social Worker (Youth)As the inpatient mental health social worker, your role is to assess risk and determine appropriate discharge options from the hospital setting.

Community ServicesYouth WorkerAs the Youth worker you are tasked with supporting Asma in the community. You will be utilising wellbeing assessments as well as identifying risk and protective factors.

Community ServicesParenting Support CaseworkerAs the parenting support worker your role is to work with Benazir as your primary client.  The focus of your work is to assess the family’s wellbeing and to identify support strategies for Benazir.

SchoolWelfare officerAs the school welfare officer your role is to assess Asma’s wellbeing through the lens of her education.

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