Recent News

Recent News

Celebrating the Social Workers of VHA

March 6, 2024

March is Social Work Month across Canada and March 4-10 is Social Work Week in Ontario. These events are important opportunities to highlight and recognize the valuable contributions of social workers. This year’s theme #SocialWorkOpensDoors, reflects on how social workers use their unique expertise to find new and empowering pathways and solutions for the people that they support.

At VHA Home HealthCare (VHA), we are so grateful for our social workers who provide vital care and create connections for our clients—at home, work and in schools. Every day our social workers open doors to help our clients preserve or regain their independence. Let’s recognize and learn more about the positive contributions of the profession and celebrate all of the social workers across the province, and at VHA.

What is a Social Worker?

Registered Social Workers (RSW) are regulated health professionals who respond to the needs of individuals, couples, families, and groups, to improve overall wellbeing and quality of life. They provide counselling and other mental health assessments, referrals to community social services, guidance for navigating complex health systems and also offer support through challenges including illness and chronic disease.

RSWs work in a variety of roles across many different sectors. This includes hospitals, community agencies, schools, clinics, correctional facilities, workplaces and private-practices, among many more areas. Some social workers do not work directly with clients and instead conduct research, analyze policy or teach at post-secondary institutions.

What Do Home Care Social Workers Do?

Social workers in the home care field act as client and family advocates for individuals living with chronic or acute illnesses, a disability or age-related changes. Community-based social workers also support vulnerable individuals and families living with complex mental health challenges, illness and isolation.

Social workers provide emotional support, guidance and other interventions to promote health, prevent disease and address barriers. These solutions can include teaching vital life skills to empower clients to make positive changes, as well as referrals for financial assistance, legal support, housing, medical equipment and other needs. In crisis situations, social workers educate clients and families about treatment plans or other interventions to better understand their options and make informed decisions.

VHA Voices

We connected with three VHA Social Workers to hear more about why they enjoy their work and the home care field specifically. Here’s what they had to say:

Alisha Alladina, MSW, RSW
Champlain Rehab Solutions, Ottawa 

“I love being able to support so many aspects of my clients’ lives—socially, psychologically, financially and physically—to help them reach specific goals. It is a really good feeling to have conversations about what would have the biggest impact and explore possible solutions together. Then to see the positive results of these solutions is very rewarding.

“Home care is unique because I get to work with my clients in their actual living environments. Through this work I am able to understand the things that are meaningful to them and connect more deeply in order to be a better advocate. On the other hand, we also assess limitations within the system and hold space for our clients’ emotions around what is ‘impossible’ at this time. I think that’s really important too.”

Bryann Muirhead BSW, RSW
VHA Rehab Solutions, Toronto Central

“I am passionate about helping others and making a positive impact on the lives of individuals and their families. By building strong and trusting relationships, I am able to clearly understand each client’s unique strengths, challenges and aspirations. I enjoy identifying solutions to complex issues and finding creative ways to address my clients’ needs. Witnessing their progress and growth is so rewarding.”

“My role as a client and family advocate, focused on issues around equality and social justice, is one of the most meaningful parts of this work. There are continuous opportunities for growth and development and I appreciate working on a multi-disciplinary team to reach our shared goals together.”

Asimah Husain MSW, RSW, CYW
Child & Family Support Program Supervisor, VHA Home HealthCare

Asimah Husain, VHA Social Worker

Asimah Husain, VHA Social Worker

“My work in the community supports vulnerable families in the Toronto-area where poverty, mental illness or isolation has put parents and their children aged 0-4 at risk. They usually have limited to no support and many are refugees, victims of intimate partner violence, experiencing a medical crisis or lacking parenting skills and knowledge.”

“We’re able to help these families when they literally have nowhere else to turn. Regardless of the obstacles they are facing, I get to see how much parents will sacrifice for their children. It is so empowering to see their resilience and the impact that this type of support can have on their health, healing and confidence.”

Thank you Alisha, Bryann, Asimah and all of our VHA social workers for opening doors to provide greater safety, stability and mental health for our clients and their families every day!

VHA’s social work services are covered under our VHA Rehab Solutions (or Champlain Rehab Solutions in Ottawa) branch. Social Workers are currently available in the Greater Toronto Area and Ottawa. Reach out to your local VHA or Champlain Rehab Solutions office if you are interested in receiving support.

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