Marioli Sterling on When Should You Seek Out the Guidance of a Social Worker

Social workers are there for their clients, no matter what they’re going through. That is why it can be difficult to define exactly who social workers help, because the scope of their job is so large. Social workers work with people of all ages, genders, and backgrounds; they do not discriminate.

Marioli Sterling is a social worker in New York City, who specializes in working with families. She has helped many families throughout her career, especially single parent-households that are struggling to get by. The one piece of advice she can offer is to always ask for help when you need it. She has witnessed too many people that refuse to seek out the guidance of a social worker, even when it’s clear they could benefit from it. She outlines a few key signs that it might be time to contact a social worker, as well as how that social worker will be able to help in certain situations.

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If You or Someone You Love is Suffering from Substance Abuse

Substance abuse is a serious issue that social workers can help people address and overcome. If you or someone you know is struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, it’s important to seek help as early as possible. One option for seeking help is to call a social worker. There are specific social workers who dedicate their lives to people who suffer from substance abuse. These professionals typically work in hospitals and rehabilitation centers. They can provide both long and short-term solutions to those struggling with addiction, as well as offer resources and medical treatment plans. Overall, Marioli Sterling asserts that social workers can help individuals find ways to overcome their addiction in order to be as healthy as possible.

If You are a Single Parent Struggling to Raise Your Child or Make Ends Meet

Being a single parent is no easy task and it becomes even more challenging when you’re battling difficult financial or health circumstances. But Marioli Sterling wants all single parents to know that they are not alone. Whether through emotional support, the recommendation of resources, or family counselling, there are many ways that social workers can help single parents who are struggling to raise their child or make ends meet. For example, if your child is suffering from a mental illness, social workers can help parents acquire resources to help their child. Or if you are having trouble making enough money to support yourself and your child, social workers can help by providing you with a database of community resources and helping connect you directly with those resources.

If You are a Child Who has been Through Trauma or Abuse

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Marioli Sterling claims that children require support from social workers just as much as adults do. Sterling has worked with hundreds of families, including children of all ages and during this time, she has learned that in order to grow into a healthy adult, it’s critical to address childhood issues head on. There are many social workers who have devoted themselves to working with youth, helping children that have experienced trauma or abuse or suffer from mental health issues. Often, social workers will work in schools so that they can identify obstacles that may interfere with a child’s learning. However, youth social workers do more than just help young people stay on track academically. They can offer counselling to children that touch on school, but also home life and one’s social life and they can help resolve behavioral issues that may stem from a child’s circumstances. Thus, Marioli Sterling urges any parent, guardian, or teacher who thinks a child may be suffering from abuse or struggling with their mental health to reach out to a social worker.

If You or Someone You Love has a Serious Health Condition

Finally, another sign that you should seek out the help of a social worker is when you or someone you love is suffering from a serious health condition, such as a terminal illness. Hospice and palliative care social workers are available in almost all communities. Marioli Sterling says that these workers can help alleviate the burden of having to care for someone around the clock. They can help the ill person with pain relief or decision-making when it comes to their illness. Further, hospice and palliative care social workers are also trained to offer support to the family and friends of the patient. Having a loved one fall ill is a traumatic experience and the emotional support of a social worker can help a great deal.

Panama born, Marioli Sterling found her love for social work and hopes to inspire others with her story.

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