Turkmenistan social work educators and practitioners are trained by the Columbian University experts

Over 30 educators and social work practitioners from Ashgabat and velayats completed a one-week online training of trainers provided by the Columbia University School of Social Work on building social service workforce competencies as part of the Joint Programme on “Improving the system of social protection through the introduction of inclusive quality community-based social services” funded by the Joint SDG Fund.

The online training was organized by UNICEF for the social work educators from the Ministry of Education of Turkmenistan, higher education institutions, and the Academy of Civil Servants of Turkmenistan, as well for the social work practitioners from the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Turkmenistan, social work specialists, and representatives of the CSOs.

This practical online course was designed to develop participants’ interpersonal communication and community engagement skills throughout the process of social work practice with children, families, vulnerable groups, and communities.

During the training, participants enhanced their knowledge on professional ethics and anti-discriminatory practices in social work and social service provision, active listening skills and non-verbal communication in social work. They also learnt how to work with beneficiaries and individual groups and developed their interpersonal communication skills used in the process of assessment and planning in social work and provision of social services.

Participants were also shortly introduced to the work of international organizations involved in social work, such as International Association of Schools of Social Work (IASSW) and International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW).

It is expected that participants will further contribute to the introduction of social work major to the higher education system of the country and provide support to the sustainability of inclusive and quality community-based social services piloted as part of the Joint Programme on social services.


The Joint Programme “Improving the system of social protection through the introduction of inclusive quality community-based social services”, funded by the Joint SDG Fund, is being implemented by the partnering UN agencies, namely, UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA, and UNODC and Government of Turkmenistan. The Joint Programme aims to introduce a new model of social services at the community level accompanied by relative legislative reviews and capacity building of national social service workforce. The lead national partner is the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Population of Turkmenistan and the lead UN agency is UNICEF. Other key national partners include the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health and Medical Industry, and Ministry of Finance and Economy. Implementation period: 2020-2022.


Source: UN office in Turkmenistan.


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