Sasha Kondrashov Ani Dingamtar and 2nd year anniversary virtual chat participants
#EMPRSocialWork idea was born in Dublin at the International Social Work Conference in 2018, where Thompson Rivers University was one of the few Schools of Social Work represented by both a social work student and a faculty member. Two years later, and TRU BSW Program alumni Ani Dingamtar and TRU Assistant Professor Sasha Kondrashov, with more than 1000 Instagram followers, organized a virtual chat. Seventy-five global social workers registered for the virtual chat to share the power of Instagram. More than 30 live chat attendees from around the world shared their passion for Instagram and listened to the inspiring and motivating speakers and creators of Social Work Instagram pages:
Trisha and Joyce #unionizesocialworknow https://www.instagram.com/nswalliance/
Tiffany L. Green #reiliencyllc https://www.instagram.com/resiliencyllc/
Rebecca Ogle #groundedcounseling https://www.instagram.com/groundedcounseling/
Laura Swanson #socialworkbub https://www.instagram.com/socialworkbub/
Catherine Moore #socialworkersrise https://www.instagram.com/socialworkersrise/
The chat started with acknowledging Indigenous lands where participants connected on Zoom. The registrants represented more than 40 geographic locations around the world that included: Athens, Atlanta, Beit shemesh, Bossier City, Boston, Bucharest, Buffalo, Calgary, Cherkasy, Chicago, Chilliwack, Columbus, Denver, Doylestown, Fredericton, Halifax, Hoboken, Ibadan, Kamloops, Kansas City, Kenora, Kilifi, Los Angeles, Lviv, Mombasa, Morristown, New York, Opole, Orillia, Philadelphia, Phoenixville, Pocatello, Portage, Rochester, Saskatoon, Superior, Sydney, Toronto, Vancouver, and Winnipeg.
As each presenter shared their story, the dialogue started to occur. The chat included many questions ranging from how to use social media ethically to create a social work podcast. Many resources were shared in the chat that will be sent to all registrants, and many new ideas and action plans were created to promote social work practice using social media. There will be more virtual chats in the future. We want to thank all Participants: Your presence keeps us @EMPRSocialWork!
What Does Empowerment Mean to You? Responses from Virtual Chat Registrants:
- A dynamic designed by the powerful to increase the power of the powerless
- Action and motivation
- As more people become engaged and take effective tools of social work, the more people get help
- basic dignity
- be free to choose behavior
- Being able to advocate for yourself and others
- Being able to exercise agency in making changes in my life
- client self-determination
- Collaboration & connectedness
- Empowerment means giving strength and voice to an individual or group
- Empowerment means providing the tools, knowledge, information, and motivation to others to guide them towards living their best
- Everyone treated with the utmost respect
- Feeling embolden to be your best self and make your best efforts in any and everything you do.
- Fighting for equality and equity
- Growth individually, as a profession, and as a community. Empowerment also means finding our voice in the Labor Movement.
- Having the knowledge and skills to self-actualize
- Having the resources and information needed to succeed
- Helping people feel more confident in themselves and their ability to access the resources around them
- It is the process of developing abilities and capabilities to make informed choices that impact one’s life and the community gen
- It means feeling courageous to take action and fulfill your purpose.
- It means helping people to see the tools and strengths that they have and then getting out of the way.
- Knowing how & being able to choose for yourself.
- Knowing what to do first, and how to do it
- Lifting up and getting out of the way
- Making an informed decision
- Means been able to stand on your own
- Power to do the impossible
- Process of Social Change
- Self-belief and action with community uplifting
- Self-determination and choice
- Strength, agency & choice
- Strength, Voice, Visibility, Power
- Supporting and building others up to create a strong foundation for achievement.
- The ability to choose for myself
- To have freedom to do….
- To make people feel that there is a reason and importance to keep doing what they do or going to do.