The continuing education programme is primarily aimed at employees in the municipal child welfare service throughout Norway. The programme is a collaboration between the Centre for Intercultural Communication, the programme area for culture and religious science at VID Stavanger, and the Department for Social Studies at the University of Stavanger.
Objective of the programme
The continuing education programme aims to help strengthen child welfare personnel’s expertise in ensuring that children and families with a minority background receive the help and assistance they need.
Students will learn how to critically evaluate and further develop their own knowledge, skills and attitudes. This means focusing on how processes related to migration, culture and diversity affect the circumstances of the minority population and the interaction between minorities and the child welfare service. The goal is for students to be able to evaluate and apply different perspectives, theories and evidence-based methods that promote equality in the service provision.
Content of the programme
The study programme has an interdisciplinary approach, with the aim of child welfare workers being able to handle complex multidisciplinary matters that include individual, social, economic, socio-political and cultural aspects. Students will also learn how, in order to be able to understand other people’s perspectives and horizons of understanding, knowledge is needed of how culture can serve as a frame of reference for lifestyle and behavioural choices. Such knowledge is necessary for facilitating and providing measures that children and families consider useful and effective. Critical and reflexive basic theories linked to the assumptions and knowledge on which child welfare practice is based therefore play an important role. The aim is for the child welfare worker to be able to use inclusive approaches in the interaction with children and families with a minority ethnic background, in child welfare assessments and in the implementation of measures for this group. The study programme is also based on the belief that all people have several identities and that increased minority competence is not only useful in the work with minority families but has relevance for work with all families in the child welfare service.
The continuing education programme will have a special focus on skills training and the practical application of theory to help child welfare workers deal with difficult situations in a constructive and professional manner.