Social work in Nepal: challenges and options
Nepalese social work is still young but slowly developing. Presently, it has many challenges, including relying on western methods and approaches because there is not any existing Nepalese model of social work. Other challenges include lack of adequate training, lack of regulation and guidelines, interference from the government, organisations or donors and lack of integrity and accountability on the part of some ‘social workers’. Not all people working as social workers in the country have training or qualifications in social work. To protect service users, families and communities, the factors that are hindering professionalism should be solved. Accelerating social work training should be one of the solutions, together with professional licensing and regulation. It would be important if social workers advocate for better social work education and practice approaches – this should help identify the basic elements to develop a Nepalese model of social work. Rather than using the western perspectives and concepts, it is necessary to come up with local approaches and practices of social work. Academics, practitioners, government even service users can work inclusively in developing the Nepalese model of social work. If the government recognizes social workers, public financing in the social work sector could improve Getting the profession recognized, publishing adequate literature and making the association of social work strong should be the vision for the social worker in future. This article focuses on the situation of social work in Nepal with particular emphasis on challenges and options.