A social work approach to knowledge sharing during times of crisis

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The coronavirus pandemic entered Australia as the country was emerging from many months of catastrophic bushfires throughout the summer of 2019-2020. The unprecedented and rapidly evolving nature of these disasters highlighted the need for timely, evidence-based knowledge to support individuals and organisations responding to new, complex, and changing situations in the absence of established research, evidence, and resources. Social workers are uniquely equipped with knowledge and skills that enable us to understand and respond to diverse social, emotional, and systemic variables within a wide range of environments.

This paper presents the reflection of two Australian social work academics who responded to a call for knowledge to support work with older adults during the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic. This innovation drew on key social work principles as we challenged ageist discourses and equipped practitioners with resources to respond to identified risks emerging from the increased social isolation of older adults due to public health requirements. This reflection
explores the process of responding to the perceived need for information and guidance and suggests a practice model for rapidly disseminating knowledge in a climate of change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120-125
Number of pages6
JournalAdvances in Social Work and Welfare Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 27 Jul 2022


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