Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Social Work ]]> vol. 55 num. 4 lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Editorial</b>]]> <![CDATA[<b>Reflections on the experiences and needs of grandparents caring for their grandchildren with a substance use disorder</b>]]> In South Africa grandparents play a significant role in family life. A qualitative study was undertaken to explore and describe the perspectives of grandparents caring for their grandchildren with substance use disorder (SUD). Data were collected by means of semi-structured interviews with grandmothers and analysed following Tesch's eight steps. Guba's classic model was employed for data verification. The findings revealed that grandparents experience heightened levels of stress, fear, intimidation, disappointment, shame and financial constraints, which may subsequently compromise their social wellbeing. Based on these findings, recommendations are made in an attempt to provide solutions to the challenges faced by grandparents. <![CDATA[<b>Economic experiences and sustainable livelihoods of single mothers employed in the formal work sector in Germany and South Africa</b>]]> This article seeks to disrupt the dominant discourses of victimhood related to single-mother family status. Drawing on a sustainable livelihood framework, we present data from in-depth interviews held with 25 single mothers sampled in Hagen, Germany, and in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal provinces in South Africa. We discuss how participants engaged in positive human capital development, building social capital and tapped into multiple income streams for economic security. Given the intersectional injustices that single mothers face, the strengths the women drew on in their lives is worth noting. We conclude that single mothers have created a new narrative for themselves beyond a pathological one. <![CDATA[<b>The role of fathers receiving social grants in decisionmaking processes within poor rural households in Alice, Eastern Cape of South Africa</b>]]> This paper examines the role of fathers receiving social grants in the decision-making process in poor rural households. Data were collected from a sample of 195 respondents. Data-collection methods included in-depth interviews and survey questionnaires. The findings revealed that fathers receiving social grants, together with their partners were jointly making household decisions, even though they were the ones contributing more income to the household. It was found that economic factors play a critical role in positioning other household members in decision-making. We conclude that co-operative bargaining, resulting in the distribution of power in the decision-making process, is relatively prominent in most poor rural households. The authors provide some practical social work recommendations. <![CDATA[<b>Falling through the cracks: Young adults' recollections of exposure to domestic violence during childhood</b>]]> Exposure to domestic violence during childhood impacts on the child's overall development in a way that affects functioning in adulthood (cf. Rzepka, 2007:2; Bogeanu, 2012). This article seeks to describe the recollections of young adults who were exposed to domestic violence, so as to develop an understanding of what is needed to develop effective services to child victims of domestic violence. The description is based on a qualitative research study that confirmed a lack of services to children exposed to domestic violence. The participants described the influence on their childhood and on their current lives, and made suggestions for social work servicesMs Danelia Warnick, Social worker; Department of Social Development and former master's student in the Department of Social Work, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa. <![CDATA[<b>A theory-based school violence prevention programme for high school learners in the Tshwane South District, Gauteng Province, South Africa</b>]]> There is a lack of theory-driven and evidence-based school violence prevention programmes targeting high school learners. In line with a developmental social work approach within a framework of stakeholder participation and empowerment, the Think Smart-Take Charge-Turn a New Leaf programme was designed and implemented e. Following a one-group pre-test/post-test survey design, a focus group interview with eight Grade 11 learners to obtain information on their experiences and their opinions about the outcomes of the programme was conducted. This pilot evaluation determined that the programme effectively enhanced student knowledge and positively influenced attitudes towards violence, but did not appear to change behaviours. <![CDATA[<b>Developing the notion of <i>Ubuntu </i>as African theory for social work practice</b>]]> Ubuntu is an African concept referring to humanness. It gives expression to deeply-held African ideals of one's personhood being rooted in one's interconnectedness with others. Social workers seeking to develop an African framework for decolonial social work practice turn repeatedly to ubuntu for aid. But the term has, for the most part, been limited to the idea of mutual aid - people helping each other in a spirit of solidarity. This article endeavours to extend and deepen the ubuntu concept to strengthen its potential as a theory informing social work practice. This is done by interweaving other African ideas with ubuntu in three domains: ethics, sustainable development and ecospirituality <![CDATA[<b>Risk-laden working lives of child protection social workers in South Africa</b>]]> This study reports on the findings of semi-structured interviews with ten social workers employed by designated child protection organisations in Gauteng, South Africa to explore their lived experiences of workplace risks and subsequent negative outcomes. Thematic analysis of transcribed interviews yielded risk factors embedded in the socio-ecological model, namely intrapersonal (personality traits and the dichotomy of human vs. professionalism); interpersonal (unsupportive supervisors; lack of co-operation among professionals); institutional (challenges unique to child protection social work); community (unrealistic expectations from communities); societal / public policy (lack of funding and resources, political interference). A discussion follows and the way forward is deliberated. <![CDATA[<b>"We can't be here forever": University students' reflections on terminating community-engagement relationships</b>]]> Studies on community engagement (CE) focus on its benefits but not enough on termination and difficulties experienced at the personal level with exiting projects. A study on CE with service-learning students and volunteers at a South African university identified issues and themes pertaining to termination as systematic process, emotional responses to termination, and the need to find closure. This paper argues that termination should be more integral to CE processes, and considering that CE experiences can influence further involvement, it is important to end engagement processes more conscientiously than currently happens.