With the overriding purpose of providing participants with the knowledge, skills and insights required to be efficient social work professionals, Samtse College of Education (SCE), with the technical support of UNICEF (Bhutan),has launched the Certificate Course in Social Work.
Anchored on Samtse College of Education’s philosophical vision of right View (Ita-ba), right Contemplation (sgom-pa) and right Action (spyod-pa) leading to right Fruition (‘brau-bu), the Certificate Course in Social Work set off with the aim of preparing the next generation of social work professionals whose knowledge, skills and values shall be guided by the wisdom of Jinpa (sbyin-pa) – the act of beneficence or generosity.
Mr Anuriddha Kulkami, Child Protection Specialist of the UNICEF, graced the opening ceremony on January 22 2018 by unfurling the Tashi Khadar and delivering a key note address. Mr. Anuriddha mentioned that knowledge and skills are found in the value systems of social work. “We need to have knowledge and skills to understand the problems very well so that we can develop solutions locally and address the pressing issues” he added. He also mentioned that the combination of theory and practice plays a pivotal role in social work. “Theory helps clarify some of the basic concepts but it is the practice that takes the initiatives forward.” He also brought to the fore the analogy of the “Head” and the “Heart” where he highlighted the pivotal importance of balancing our head and the heart while working for a social cause. He said that the heart might feel empathy and care for others, but the head should harmonize with the heart through a systematic-scientific approach that shall lead the initiatives towards advocating positive social changes.
Also, the Programme coordinator Dr Ganeshman Gurung mentioned that social work has been the most profound intangible culture and a practice deeply rooted in our Buddhist tradition. We are embracing these ideas, alongside the best international practices, to take us forward and weave our curriculum to suit the local context and practices. He maintained that the wisdom of right View (Ita-ba), right Contemplation (sgom-pa) and right Action (spyod-pa) leading to right Fruition (‘brau-bu) shall serve as the philosophical foundation while delivering the certificate course in social work. Meanwhile, the participants claimed that the certificate courses in social work was an eye-opening experience to them. “I am now aware of the procedures involved in pursuing social work activities. I am going back to my agency with knowledge and skill much need, apparently” said Chumo Wangmo from the Department of Employment. Similarly, Anuka Rai from the Department of Youth and Sports said “I have now understood social work through a broader lens. I have learned how to move forward strategically.” “The certificate course in social work experience has enhanced my listening and communication skills. I am ready to drive forward as a social worker” said Sonam Choden from Tarayana Foundation.