Read the case study below:
Joy is a 58y/o woman who is originally from Manilla in the Philippines. She is married to Robert (60 y/o) who has an English background, but grew up in Manfred Harbour.
Joy came to Australia when she was in her early 20s. She met Robert when he was visiting Manilla on holiday nearly 35 years ago. They fell in love, and Joy then come to Australia to be with Robert. They married and had three children who are now all in their 30s. Their names are Judy (34y/o), who is now a lawyer for a big law firm in Sydney, David (32y/o), who is an engineer working for the Manfred Harbour Regional Council, and Peter (30y/o), who owns a trendy café in Manfred Harbour.
Life was good for Joy, Robert and their children. Robert’s job as an accountant meant that he could earn enough to provide for his family. Joy never had to work and she never felt the need to study. She was happy to be a ‘stay at home mum’.
Around six years ago the mortgage on the family home was paid off, and wanting to do the best they could financially, Robert and Joy invested in a property development scheme for up-market apartments on the Silver Coast. This, they reasoned, would boost their retirement funds and set up a better future for their children. In order to do this, they had to use the family home as equity for an investment loan from the bank. Silver Coast property prices began to fall and the scheme they had invested in lost money.
Robert had always enjoyed gambling, but he knew his limits so it had never been a problem before. However, with the financial stress he was experiencing, he began gambling regularly and for extended periods of time. He wanted to put things right for his family. The gambling became addictive and Robert began putting all his weekly earnings towards the chance of winning the jackpot to get out of financial difficulty. He lost all the family savings, defaulted on their investment loan and the banks then foreclosed on the family home.
The situation put stress on Robert and Joy’s relationship and they separated. Robert moved in with his long-time work colleague, Mary, and Joy became homeless. She desperately wanted to go back to the Philippines to see her family, but couldn’t afford to go. She did not want to impose on her children. To this day, her children still do not know what has happened because she feels too ashamed to tell them.
Joy is now living in the Manfred Harbour Women’s Shelter and is receiving a Centrelink payment. She cannot stay at the shelter because the service needs the space for other women who are experiencing domestic violence.
Answer the following questions
What are the broader social issues that may be impacting on Joy as well as the services that are assisting her?
How would a critical social work approach would inform your practice with Joy?
The following is a suggestion for structuring yuor essay
Explain the broader social context of Neoliberal policies and how they impact on individuals and services.
Using one theoretical perspective, analyse the social context and explain how it might impact on Joy’s experience.
Explain the main elements of a critical social work approach.
Evaluate the effectivenness of this a critical social work approach for working with Joy.
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