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1 European Journal of Social Education Journal Européen d Education Sociale A Periodical of FESET / Revue de FESET N 20/

2 A Periodical of FESET / Revue de FESET N 20/

3 European Journal of Social Education A periodical of FESET, European Association of Training Centers for Socio-Educational Care Work, International Non Governmental organisation (INGo) enjoying participative status at the Council of Europe. Editorial Board Eeva Timonen-Kallio, Turku, Finland (editor) Margaret Gilmore, Sligo, Ireland (co-editor) Christer Cederlund, Stockholm, Sweden Inge Danielsen, Copenhagen, Denmark Jean-Marie Heydt, Strasbourg, France Paola Richard-De Paolis, Lausanne, Switzerland Áine de Róiste, Cork, Ireland Francois Sentis, Marseille, France Reidar S. Österhaug, Stavanger, Norway The European Journal of Social Education aim is to promote discussion on ideas, research results, training methods and practices between teachers, researchers, professionals and other contributors or responsible actors in the socio-educational field. Special issues devoted to a particular theme alternate ordinary issues, which are organized in 4 sections: Focus on training Developments in theoretical approaches and structured training methods. Target groups Socio-educational practices, field experiences and methods concerning community education, activating to work or other educational actions with different groups (from early childhood to elderly; disabled; marginalised users). Social politics An informative and critical review on national or local politics for social education and social work, as well as discussion about social politics of the council of europe and of the european union. Book review This section will present readers contributions on books of interest for teaching and/or relevant for practices. Special issues devoted to a particular theme alternate ordinary issues. For reactions to published articles, suggestions, submissions articles please contact: Copyright Every part of this publication may be reproduced only by means of integral quotation (author/s, article title, complete references of the revue: title, issue, year, pages). FESET 2011 ISSN

4 Editorial Contents Sommaire Eeva Timonen-Kallio & Margaret Gilmore 4 Focus on training / Focus sur la formation Áine de Róiste & Celesta McCann-James Working with Families Curricular Considerations for Social Pedagogy and Social Care Education 9 Ana Maria Serapicos & Florbela Samagaio & Gabriela Trevisan Constructing and (re) constructing professional identities: an analysis on Portuguese Social Educators 24 Judit Fullana & Carles Serra & Maria Pallisera The social professions in Spain: past and present 34 Gabriella Bodnár & Andrea Riez Identity questions of professors in social pedagogy training 45 Target groups / Groupes cibles Palle Esben Jørgensen & Knut Skjærvold How can we meet the needs of boys and girls in social pedagogical work? 55 Mark Taylor Facing the Emotional Challenge of Social Care Work 63 Social Politics / Politiques sociales Christer Cederlund The premises of normality - social pedagogical challenges 81 Book review / Livres à vous Inge Danielsen Kornbeck & Jensen & Rosendal (Eds.): The Diversity of Social Pedagogy in Europe 94

5 Editorial We have pleasure in bringing you this latest volume 20/ in the European Journal of Social Education. The articles are of particular interest to members of FESET since they began as presentations in our seminar in Osnabrueck in April Many people could not come to the seminar because of the Icelandic volcanic eruption causing problems for flights, so now they can read about some of the presentations. We have a rich menu in our current issue, from six countries in all Sweden, Spain, Hungary, Ireland, Portugal and finally Norway. This is a testament to our varied and far-flung membership. Sadly we have no French language articles offered this time but of course we hope this is a very unusual occurrence and that our next issue will see many French language articles. The articles are thought-provoking on many aspects of social pedagogy, for example on the gender composition of the profession or the content of the syllabus, but overall on how this education works best and how it can be improved, for example in working with families. The construction of professional identities is of great interest to all of us who prepare students for entering the social professions, and it is particularly interesting to read a study of how this evolves over time. Another article discusses one way of handling the emotional stresses inherent in this work. The challenges of social pedagogy will always have an interested readership. We also recommend the book review on this interesting topic to our readers. 5 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

6 A variety of methodological approaches are represented and contributions include both empirically based and theoretical articles. Some articles are offered for blind peer review. We are very grateful to all reviewers whose expertise contributed to the further development of the submitted articles. A landmark decision recently is that we have agreed to work with EBSCO and this has the potential to bring our Journal to a much wider audience. So we would like to thank our current authors and to encourage all our readers to consider submitting articles which are relevant to this Journal. You will find the guidelines for submission on our website We would like to extend thanks to all the members of the Editorial team and to the Board of FESET, and to extend good wishes to all our members. Eeva Timonen-Kallio Editor Margaret Gilmore Co-Editor 6 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

7 Editorial Nous avons le plaisir de vous présenter ici le dernier volume du journal européen d éducation sociale. Les articles sont d un intérêt tout particulier pour les membres de la FESET puisqu ils sont les prolongements écrits des communications faites au séminaire d Osnabrück d avril Plusieurs inscrits n avaient pu être présents en raison des éruptions volcaniques irlandaises qui ont perturbé le ciel européen Maintenant ils pourront prendre connaissance d une partie des présentations! Notre numéro est riche d articles de six pays: Suède, Espagne, Hongrie, Irlande, Portugal et Norvège. C est un reflet de la diversité de nos membres. Malheureusement, nous n avons pas d article en Français cette fois, mais nous espérons biensûr que c est exceptionnel et que notre prochaine mouture va comporter plusieurs articles en Français. Ces textes stimulent la réflexion en éducation sociale sur bien des aspects : par exemple, sur la répartition homme/femme de la profession, sur le contenu des formations, mais la préoccupation est surtout de voir comment cette profession «fonctionne», et comment elle peut-être améliorée, par exemple en travaillant avec les familles. La construction des identités professionnelles est d un grand intérêt pour ceux d entre nous qui préparent des étudiants à entrer dans les professions sociales, et il est particulièrement intéressant de lire une étude sur l évolution de cet aspect à travers le temps. Les défis de l éducation sociale vont continuer longtemps, semble-t-il, d intéresser notre lectorat Une variété d approches méthodologiques est représentée et les contributions incluent autant des articles à base empirique que des articles théoriques. Certains articles sont relus en double aveugles. Nous remercions chaleureusement les relecteurs pour leur contribution à l amélioration des articles proposés. 7 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

8 Une décision importante prise récemment par notre revue est de travailler avec EBSCO ce qui nous permettra d élargir l audience de notre journal. Nous remercions tous les auteurs de cette revue et encourageons les lecteurs à prendre en considération les articles qu ils vont y trouver. Si ces lecteurs désirent eux-mêmes se mettre à la tâche pour écrire, ils trouveront toutes les consignes pour soumettre un article sur notre site Nous voudrions élargir nos remerciements à tous les membres de l équipe éditoriale et au bureau de la FESET, et adresser enfin nos meilleures salutations à tous nos membres. Eeva Timonen-Kallio Editeur Margaret Gilmore Co-Editeur 8 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

9 Focus on training Focus sur la formation

10 Working with families curricular considerations for social pedagogy and social care education Áine de RÓISTE 1 Cork Institute of Technology, Ireland Celesta MCCANN-JAMES Blanchardstown Institute of Technology, Ireland Abstract This paper begins by outlining social pedagogy and social care and then goes on to examine the contribution of professional values and systemic family psychology as curricular topics with related skills for the education and training of social pedagogues/social care practitioners in working with families. Considerations for the educator in terms how these can be taught are also drawn. 1 Dr. Áine de Róiste, Dept. of Social Studies, Cork Institute of Technology, Bishopstown, Cork, Ireland. 10 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

11 Social Pedagogy Much has been written about social pedagogy, particularly with reference to residential child care. However its application to family work has received less attention. Cousée and colleagues (2008, p.12) proposed that social pedagogy (is) not a profession but a perspective. Central to social pedagogy is an emphasis on: erziehung i.e. the rearing or upbringing of children from a holistic perspective with consideration for example given to the child s physical, cognitive, social, emotional and moral/spiritual development (Petrie, 2002). Pädagogue and sozialpädagogik imply work with the whole child Pedagogues work with the whole person: pedagogic practice does not compartmentalise different aspects of the person (Petrie & Chambers, 2009, p.4). the value and importance of relationships within the child s life (ibid). the conscious use of relationships (Bengtsson, Chamberlain, Crimmins& Stanley, 2008, p.9) which can support a child s needs for both independence and interdependence. In keeping with this is recognition of the value of a child s associative life, their relationships with others they encounter in their lives (Petrie, Boddy, Cameron, Heppinstall, McQuail, Simon &Wigfall, 2009). learning opportunities that are embedded in everyday activities i.e. living as learning through engagement in the child s life-space (Sallnäs, 2009; Petrie et al., 2009). No separation is drawn, conceptually or practically, between living and learning. professionals constantly reflecting on their own practice (ibid)creative and practical skills that facilitate the pedagogue to relate to, perceive and engage with others in diverse ways. creative and recreational activities enable people to express themselves differently and develops the imagination. This recognises that pedagogues and children can interact differently through various creative, recreational and practical activities. 11 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

12 a reflexive and democratic approach to a child s upbringing, child led as far as possible, as opposed to one that is hierarchical and controlling (Hansbauer, 2008). This recognises the child s rights to social inclusion and involvement in decision-making about their lives. It facilitates children to understand the choices open to them, to explore the reasoning behind various choices as well as the potential consequences of choices. According to Petrie and colleagues (2009) a social pedagogue draws on her/his heart (warmth and empathy), head (rational decision-making) and hands (creative, recreational and practical activities) in professional practice. This is undertaken through developing a relationship with a person or group (including family) across daily living situations and social contexts. A feature of this may include the formulation of a social pedagogical intervention which according to Hallstedt&Högström, 2009, p.29)is the use of theoretical knowledge, combined with a communicative and reflective capability in the encounter with the client. In Ireland the profession of social care has strong parallels with social pedagogy. Curricula in undergraduate training typically include academic, creative/recreational, practice and personal/professional development modules. A basic definition of social care agreed by the Irish Association of Social Care Educators (IASCE) is a profession committed to the planning and delivery of quality care and other support services for individuals and groups with identified needs (Lalor & Share, 2009, p.5). Lalor and Share have also noted that In the broader European context, social care practice is usually referred to as social pedagogy and social care practitioners as social care pedagogues (ibid, p.9). However, given its emphasis on professionalization and academic content, it has been argued by some that the relationship between the social care practitioner and, for example a young person, is not as symmetrical as the corresponding relationship between a social pedagogue and young person, as found in some, though not all of the other European countries (Hallstedt&Högström, 2009). This can be seen in working with families, where attention to national child protection legislation and procedures seems to be a more dominating concern for social care practitioners than social pedagogues. As noted by Petrie and colleagues (2009, p.7) pedagogic approaches tend to be child-focused, rather than procedure-focused. Attention to appropriate procedures is a necessary part of the work, but not its basis. The professionalism of the worker, transparency of practice, a commitment to team work and accountability to others in the team, are seen as the 12 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

13 best guarantee of child safety Pedagogues are trained to consider parents as partners, with whom they can enter a dialogue about the development and wellbeing of individual children, as well as providing advice and counselling on parenting. One of the groups that social care practitioners and social pedagogues encounter in their professional practice is the family unit. As with other professional work, attention to professional values underpinning practice is central to any professional education and training. A selection of these will now be explored. Professional Values for Working with Families Non-judgemental practice In considering the fundamental skills and values for social care workers/social pedagogues in working with children and their families, we must start with the concept of non-judgemental practice. Social care and social pedagogy ideally should be providing deliberative care that views family education and children s upbringing as holistic, with an emphasis on ways to nurture and support positive development (Stephens, 2009). It is thus critical to be aware of stereotyping and its impact upon learning and practice. According to Snyder and colleagues (2002), too often it is the victim who is blamed for their own plight rather than looking at the social expectation (i.e. stereotype) that has constrained their behavioural option. In working with families, it is fundamental for social care and social pedagogy courses tonurture reflection on personal values/expectations and how these may influence the professional self. This becomes very salient in working with families where domestic violence has occurred. The tendency to judge and to perceive the perpetrators and victims of domestic violence in stereotyped ways is an easy trap for a professional to fall into and something imperative to be mindful of. This is akin to what Eichsteller (2010) spoke of in emphasising the need to reflect in pedagogic training on haltung, a German concept meaning mindset or attitude - how we guide our actions by what we believe in. People are highly influenced by the judgement and behaviour of others, therefore social pedagogy should include models of unconditional positive regard for individuals (in the classroom and in care). In addition, understanding of individual s life experiences allows one to mediate between the individual and society, aiming for autonomy where possible. Because of the wider influence of society and its institutions, non-judgemental practice works towards compensating for individual and 13 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

14 structural disadvantages in the socialisation process, enabling positive change in the individual s environment. It views children (and parents) as active agents and therefore as competent, resourceful human beings, thereby maintaining a wellrounded approach towards children s experiential learning. Children are stakeholders within family support and as such should be consulted in programmes that impact upon their lives. British research has suggested that parents want to be treated in a nonstigmatised way by mainstream services, rather than be the targeted object of intervention (Inglis, 1995). The non-stigmatising advice and gate-keeping of health visitors and GPs was seen as critical by parents in their decision to approach these services for assistance or information. Accessibility and acceptability are key issues in family support work and universal services may serve as a non-stigmatising channel through which parents and children can move on to more specialist services. Inclusion Inclusive practice is another fundamental value and skills set important for working with families. Itencompasses non-discriminatory practice and acceptance. Inclusive practice strives to ensure that practice accommodates service users not only as an end product or support but in the process and decision making of objectives and goals that affect service users lives. This partnership approach and egalitarian perspective is also central to social pedagogy. Family support including for example parenting programmes, should acknowledge and respect diverse family patterns and cultural diversity. Approaches should avoid imposing conformity to one particular, often the prevailing, model of family support or parenting (Cutting, 1999). This highlights the need for pedagogues/social care practitioners to be mindful of diversity in norms, expectations, parenting practices, family values and so forth in working with families. This in turns raises the question- How does inclusion manifest itself in the pedagogical environment? Attention to this within the classroom enables students to reflect reflexively, drawing parallels between the educational context and other social contexts where people experience exclusion and measures put in place to support greater inclusion. Empowerment Empowerment as defined by Heumann and colleagues (2001, p.9) is a process of recognising, promoting and enhancing people s ability to meet their own needs, solve their own problems and mobilise necessary resources in order to feel in control of their own lives. This is inherent to social pedagogy given its egalitarian per- 14 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

15 spective to the child or family (or service user) and the value it places on the recognition of the human rights of those with whom the pedagogue works with. Empowerment includes a person, family or group knowing, asserting and defending their rights while at the same time knowing the responsibilities such rights and subsequent actions require. Rather than flourishing easily and/or naturally, empowerment thrives in a culture where equality and diversity are valued; in a culture that recognises citizenship and human rights and where empowered choice requires informed user involvement (Phillips, 2007). In practical terms this means that in working with families, social care workers and pedagogues need to work with and not simply for families; enabling the family to exercise as much choice and control over how the pedagogue/care worker works with the family as possible. Family contracts and review meetings help in achieving this by ensuring transparency and clarity over the work undertaken with the family. Empowering family members requires parental (and child) involvement at all steps including for example, the design, structure and running ofa parenting programme. Parents want to be able to exercise choice about the support they are to receive and to be able to contribute to setting the agenda of such support (Cutting, 1998). Family support (including parenting programmes) should draw upon parents existing knowledge and experience and recognise that many parents regardless of socio-economic environment are competent and effective caregivers. Programmes should support parents to understand, enjoy and feel more in control of their role. This principle allows parenting support services to recognise and support common wisdom and prevents support services being viewed by parents as paternalistic, didactic or as hobby horses for professionals. An approach to families that shows the characteristics forwarded by Miley and colleagues (2004) might be described as empowering. These characteristics include: 1. An approach that acknowledges contextualconsiderations relating to the family, culture, society at large. 2. Affirmation of collaboration- i.e. a partnership approach that allows service users to share in decision-making. 3. An emphasis on family strengths and opportunities (i.e. working creatively and realistically towards goals and emphasising what is possible) 4. An integration of practice activities at multiple system levels rather than simply meeting immediate needs but identifying where changes are needed to achieve long term family goals. 15 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

16 5. Incorporation of a political approach by promoting change and action for families at local, national and international levels. 6. Commitment to reflection in action and reflection on action in working with families. If we seek to draw on aspects of empowerment in our pedagogy, as social care educators, our teaching skills must include advocacy that supports students to make known and defend their views. By doing such, students will most likely learn to represent family members identified needs and negotiate circumstances or conditions when necessary in their family work. Students whose learning environment includes experiences of empowerment will have an ability to listen actively and communicate in ways that affirm the family members they work with. This begs the question for us as educators, are we active listeners towards our students? Are we modelling active listening in the classroom? Equality and Citizenship True equality and citizenship is more than having a set of political rights; it is having the capacity to be an active citizen. This includes the right to have one s voice heard and to participate in decisions that affect one s life. Equality and citizenship is about self-determination and the inclusion in family, community and mainstream life (NDA, 2004). How is such an important value nurtured in social care/pedagogy training? Sevenhuijsen (1998) argues that citizenship should be revised from a rights based status into a notion of citizenship based on agency and responsibility. As social pedagogues we can endeavour to enhance students self-esteem and help them to identify or clarify their personal identity and subsequently their social identity. This will in turn facilitate their capacity to mediate between service users and society, between families and other social professionals. This in turn highlights the role of experiential learning in social pedagogy/care education. Students who have at the core of their learning, the centrality of relationships will be able to merge and develop theory and practice. They will have learned to observe and reflect on communication, group dynamics positive experiences and risk competence with theirs (and others) values, participation and life space. They will also need to advocate where needed on behalf of families they work with and (in some countries more than others) balance with this, the duties and obligations conferred on their role from legislation and national policy. Bringing this learning back to the teaching environment, experiential learning happens when there is a repeated use of observation and reflection of societal systems that allows for continuous development in individual people. Such social pedagogy mirrors the image of a tree which supports students (and later service 16 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

17 users ) growth with roots that move toward interdependence with society, its culture and existing practices (ThemPra Social Pedagogy, 2009). In addition students (and service users) develop like a branch that progresses individual s towards independence and personal growth. A truly experiential learning and teaching environment allows students to have opportunities to explore these two directions (i.e. roots and branches) of movement in the classroom, in tutorials, workshops and practice placements. Self- Reflection Social Pedagogues use the 3 P s (private self; personal self and professional self) to reflect on their actions and feelings in interacting with children and others. Through reflecting on themselves in these ways the Social Pedagogue can understand their actions and where they may be coming from. The 3 P s enable the Social Pedagogue to maintain an authentic interaction with young people and at the same time protect their inner self (Bengtssen et al., 2008 p.10). Equally challenging and important is the educator s teaching of the use of self. Smith (2003 p.243) states that the ability to play and to share cultural and recreational activities as a focus for relationship building and developmentally enhancing interaction are hallmarks of the good residential worker. This can be equally applied to family work as carers engage with individual and collective members of families. Importantly it can be applied to students, any of whom are being introduced to the concept of self-awareness. In the educational environment, students can learn about their most valuable tool-the self (Kennefick, 2006) and how to develop the self as part of not only one s education but as a process of learning more about ones needs and oneself. Lyons (2009) reiterates this emphasising the importance of an awareness of how the self impacts upon our relationships with others, our use of power, our attitudes, beliefs, values and needs. The self is constantly in growth, developing further through the impact of life experiences and maturity. As feelings emerge from experiences one can choose to take action and learn or do nothing and continue as before. There is potential to create change but one needs to continually check in with the self to create a more permanent selfawareness, which in itself may contribute to self-development. If we agree on the above characteristics as useful in social care/pedagogy education then our objective as educators should be to model these characteristics in our teaching methodologies and practice. We are in roles of managing the education of our students and we often have a role and position of power or some form of control over the educational experience. We therefore have the opportunity to 17 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

18 influence positive educational culture by shaping systems and procedures that encourage openness and dialogue. We are in positions where we can create space for constructive challenges to poor procedures and systems within the educational environment. With each quality featured above, educators have the opportunity in their pedagogical setting to explore the relevance and competency of meaningful partnership and constructive participation with students. The next section of the paper explores how family systems theory, can make a useful contribution to the social pedagogue and social care practitioner in working with families. Systemic family psychology its contribution to working with vulnerable families Originating from Bronfenbrenner s(1979) ecological theory, family systems theory sees the family as a system embedded within wider systems including the exosystem (social structures and institutions e.g. school, church, media) and macrosystem (overall cultural and institutional patterns of which the other systems are parts e.g. economic, legal, social systems). This is depicted in Figure 1. Inherent to family systems theory is the interplay between constancy and change as the family system tries to stay the same (i.e. achieve homeostasis) despite change and stress. Over time family sub-systems (parent child; marital dyad and sibling sub-systems) self-organise, rearranging themselves into relationship patterns governed by boundaries and rules. In addition, a shared world view (an ideology of the world outside) also contributes to maintain the family unit and to stability in how the family behaves over time. A feature of this is the tendency for family members to form shared meanings (i.e. agreements between the meanings they, and others, place on their own behaviour and that of others) (Burr, Leigh, Day & Constantine, 1979). An interactional frame of reference is part of a systemic perspective on the family, recognising the impact not only of individual family members on each other but also how any relationship within (and outside of) the family may influence other relationships within (and outside of) the family. The relationship a mother has with her child may influence the relationship the child has with the other parent as well as the relationship the mother has with her husband/partner and so forth. 18 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

19 Figure 1 Systemic perspective An acknowledgement of circular or reciprocal causation (as opposed to linear causation) in explaining family behaviours is another aspect of a systemic perspective. Reciprocal causation refers to a recursive sequence in which each action can be considered as the consequence of the action preceding it and the cause of the subsequent action. No single element in the sequence controls the operation of the sequence as a whole, because it is itself governed by the operation of the other elements of the system. Thus any person in a family system is affected by the activities of other members of the family- activities which his or her actions or decisions, in turn, influence (Herbert,1993, pp ).For example, a child s acting out behaviour may contribute to more hostile parent-child relations and negativity which in turn may contribute to more acting-out behaviour. Children are sensitive not only to the relationships they have with their parents but also to how their parents relate to their siblings which exerts an impact back on their own relationship with both their parents and siblings (Dunn &Plomin, 1990). The concept of co-dependency also recognises the need to perceive problems, such as alcoholism or substance misuse, within a relationship context. Co-dependency 19 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

20 has been described as enabling, in which a person in a relationship inadvertently reinforces the addictive or problem behaviour of another person (Whitfield, 1991). A covert coalition often develops such that the co-dependent in the relationship is somehow gaining from the other person having a particular problem, often an addiction. When family dysfunction occurs in any part of the system, symptoms may occur within any family member. Each family member and their relationships have an impact on the others with any change in these potentially exerting an impact on the family unit as a whole (Minuchin, 1974). The well-being of the family, therefore, can be thought of as the well-being of a system of relationships, each of which is characterised by an extraordinary high degree of mutuality (McKeown& Sweeney, 2001, p.6). Family systems psychology can thus be a useful theoretical framework for social pedagogues to consider in working with families. It encourages a holistic perspective in exploring the development or life path of the family as well individual children therein. It draws attention to the potential influence of past events, current issues and perceived possibilities (the perceived future). It acknowledges the importance of relationships and encourages reflection on the impact of relationships upon each other. These relationships can include those within the family as well as between family members and those with other across the wider systemic levels of the mesosystem and exosystem. This may also include how a pedagogue s relationship with one family member may have a knock on effect upon that particular family member s relationships with others. It may also impact on how others in the family relate to the pedagogue as well. Attention is also paid in family systems psychology to the daily life of the family, the family s life space and how the interaction and communication patterns that prevail between family members. This may be useful for the social pedagogue who engages with children and family members in their normal daily life, their homes and social worlds. In working with families social care practitioners and social pedagogues may need to formulate interventions with family members to assist the family with their difficulties. Family interventions that address family problems and foster family resiliency can be construed from a systemic perspective considering the family s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT analysis) within the wider family and community systems as depicted in figure1 earlier. A feature of this is looking at the role of individual family members and how they influence, and are influenced by, aspects of family life. Table 1 below depicts some of the strengths or protective factors potentially offered at the level of the individual, family and community which may guide any work by a pedagogue with the family. 20 EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL EDUCATION N. 20/21_2011

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