Thursday, June 11, 2009

"Family functioning"

That's a misnomer.

The following was written ten years ago as part of the Briefing to the Incoming Minister for Social Development.

What's changed?

The last sentence is an unusual reference to problems that have resulted from the de-institutionalisation of mentally ill or disabled people. I have grave misgivings about that development. People may not want to be supervised and stigmatised but they do need and want care and support. (Idealistic) integration into the community in practice more closely resembles isolation in the community.

The volunteer organisation I work with was formed to pass on practical domestic and budgeting skills but increasingly the families needing help have mental health problems and others as outlined above. Those are primarily in need of attention before the day to day living skills can be successfully conveyed.

It can be overwhelming.

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