Interns Double the Impact at Daily Work
By Becky Montgomery, LICSW, Volunteer Social Work Advisor at Daily Work
Do you know that Daily Work has relationships with five different schools of Social Work? This fall, Daily Work will host interns from the Schools of Social Work at Metro State (BSW), St. Catherine University-University of St. Thomas School of Social Work (BSW and MSW), University of Minnesota (MSW) and University of Wisconsin-River Falls (BSW). Previously, we also have hosted interns from Augsburg College (BSW), College of St. Scholastica, and this summer, we had our first Saint Olaf College Social Entrepreneurship Scholars intern.
Interns help make Daily Work a great investment. On average, it costs Daily Work just $1,250 to help one person find a job, less than half of what it costs other comparable programs.
Interns choose to complete their field work practicums at Daily Work because we use a Social work approach to providing employment services. What sets social work apart from other helping professions is its approach to working with people. Social work practice recognizes that in order to help people reach their goals you have to look at all the factors in their lives that help or hinder them. We call this “working with people within the context of their environment”, or “person in environment” for short.
At Daily Work our interns are focused on helping people both find and keep jobs. This involves helping people identify the skills and experience they have, asking them what kinds of jobs they are interested in and what they need from the job, i.e., types of benefits, work hours and days.
Using this information we work with them to find job openings that meet their criteria. We then look at things like where the job is located and how they will get there. For those job seekers who are dependent upon public transportation we look at how long it will take to get to the job and can the bus and/or light rail get them there. If getting to a job requires two hours each way on the bus, that job might not work out for the job seeker. Together, job seekers and students analyze each opportunity and determine what makes sense.
Other factors that impact finding and keeping jobs are housing, food access and security, availability of child care if needed, financial security and access to affordable health care. Our interns ask about these factors as part of our intake process and both provide information on and help people connect to local resources to address any needs in these areas.
Addressing all of these factors – working with the person within the context of their environment – increases the job retention rate of our job seekers, which in turn increases their financial security and their ability to care for themselves and their families.
Daily Work’s mission is to help job seekers prepare for, find and maintain work that enables them to sustain themselves and their families. Just as interns provide this help to job seekers, the staff at Daily Work is helping students of social work prepare for successful careers of their own. Your investment in Daily Work provides double the impact, by helping both job seekers and interns achieve the personal and professional growth they desire and become contributing members in our communities.
Editor’s Note: Becky Montgomery is a retired social worker who provides supervision, coaching and mentoring to our social work interns as a volunteer! We are lucky to have and grateful for her generous support.