Community Counseling

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An important aspect of modern counseling philosophy is that the clients remain in control of their own treatment program. This is a recognition of the importance of cooperation in the counseling relationship and gives the client a sense of responsibility in there own lives. This freedom of choice for the client increases their stake in the interventions and the outcome. This puts the client in the driver’s seat. The counselor does not dictate actions, but merely acts as a facilitator for change.
The philosophy of counseling is client oriented, and the role of the counselor is to promote a since of wellness and show a commitment to improving the lives of their clients. The overriding principles that drive the counseling relationship are genuineness, respect, dignity, and client self-worth. This idea is open to all individuals regardless of ethnic, cultural, racial, sexual and special needs. Counseling emphasizes unconditional positive regard, respect, a safe and caring therapeutic relationship, individual strengths, and taking control over choices.
Professional organizations set up accrediting agencies to promote, evaluate, audit, and certify institutions and programs that meet professionally recognized criteria. Programs that meet accreditation standards reassure the university faculty and students that they are being taught the skills that are needed to the current industry acceptable standards. This makes it easier for a student that goes through a CACREP program to be recognized as having the necessary skills and knowledge to pass a certification test. One of the benefits of this program is that you know that you would be going through a well-rounded educational experience. Another benefit is that the program is monitored and set up in a way that has a strategic plan that is oriented for the success of the students.
Membership in a professional association and credentialing is an excellent method for the profession to remain ethical and well regulated. It is sometimes easy to forget our ethics and fail to act in the best interest of our clients. Personal gain, self-aggrandizement, and lack of ethical education can all contribute to problems of professionalism. While credentials are a necessary part of career advancement and certification, they should not be used as a substitute for competence and caring. In the counseling profession, the law will occasionally come into conflict with the code of ethics. This means that you may have to violate the law to remain true to your own sense of morality. The counselor must be able to justify their ethical decisions and be prepared to suffer any professional or legal consequences that may arise.
Community Work Settings
Community counselors work in settings that may range from individual sessions, families, groups, and communities. Community counselors can perform many tasks that include vocational, psychological, emotional, prevention, and intervention activities. Community counselors take a role as a community activist to promote positive social change within the society. Community counselors confront issues such as drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence, and sexual abuse. This may occur in a hospital, community center, or a correctional facility. The value of early intervention has highlighted the importance of counseling moving into the school system. This would be