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Spirituality in Challenging Times:
A Resource for Practice, Advocacy, and Self-Care

Dominican University
River Forest, Illinois
June 21-23, 2007

2007 CONFERENCE—Presentations & Workshops



Thursday June 21, 2007


Meditative Meridians: Explorations into Self-care Strategies for Practitioners and Clients

            This experiential workshop explores and expands understandings about meditative practices: concentration on the breath and other forms of centering, use of imagery and relaxation and engagement of the senses through meditative walking and meditative experience of live percussion.  Discussion will explore ways to include meditation in professional work, especially          guarding against compassion fatigue through renewal of compassionate response abilities.

Holly Nelson-Becker, PhDm MSW and Edward R. Canda, PhD


Becoming a Spiritual Warrior: Practices for Personal Power, Fearless Focus and Aura Expansion

            Kundalini yoga practices to strengthen your energy center, expand your aura and increase the health of your psyche/spirit.  Ramp up your energy field to experience and project a state of confidence, power, fearless focus, unwavering convictions, compassion, love and radiance, Tibetan Yoga Visualizations and meditations to help you shine brightly, move with purpose and live your dharma.

Polly Liontis, LMT, COI, HITA


Tapping Spiritual Resources: a South African Case Study in Community Development

            As community facilitators working on the grass roots level, we often encounter situations where individuals or groups, despite everything being against them, actually made it: - mothers of severely disabled children wanting to start an outreach support project for mothers in similar   situations; unemployed people initiating an HIV/AIDS Care Project in their community; a young man who, having lost his parents at a very young age, hauled bags of coal to pay for his own schooling and then started his own township gardening service, employing 5-7 fellow youths.

Isabel Murray-Kirsten, MSW


Between Heaven and Earth: The Intersection of Spirituality and Social Work

            Using lecture, demonstration and experiential learning, this workshop presents a set of new skills  and a perspective that is radically different from any we have been taught in professional social work training or education.  Through lecturer and discussion, demonstration and dyads, a paradigm shift espoused by both modern physics and ancient wisdom will be presented to      participants, providing new insight into their reason for being in the profession in the first place, the means by which they continue to practice and the underlying interrelationship which holds it   all together.

Roberta Hanus, MSW, LCSW


Compassion in Social Work: Renewing Our Call to Practice

            This experiential workshop will explore the foundations of Compassion Education, the practices of opening and cultivating the Compassionate Heart and the role of compassion in Social Work Practice.  The workshop will offer a guided compassion meditation and a discussion of what  compassion means in the lives of participants, situations where there was a connection between compassion and life or work, and situations where there was a felt need for more compassion in   life or work.

Philip Tan, PhD and Larry S. Pickard, EdD


Meditation for Unification of Person-In-the-Environment: A Self-Care Approach

            This tested meditation is a self-care model for developing resilience for spiritual strength, preventing diseases, healing chronic diseases, and promotion of human potential.  It provides  participants with a personal experience of energy sensations from disorder to order (energy underlying contractions to systems balance) to expand the therapists’ application of systems balance of person-in-environment in their practice.  How/why discussion and implications will be provided.

Douglas Chung, PhD, MSW, MA and Beth Townsend


Therapeutic Metaphors: Healing Tales for the Spirit

            This workshop will foster an appreciation for the healing power of metaphors in problem-solving and in finding meaning during hard times.  The presenter will demonstrate ways to recognize spiritual longings and potential healing in the client’s world view.  Participants will have an opportunity to describe metaphors that have meaning for them and to design effective metaphors for their clients.

Don Streit, MSW, LCSW, ACSW


Spirituality and Advocacy: The Struggle Between Truth, Justice and Mercy

            Using a topic of public controversy such as immigration, participants will engage in a sociodrama to gain a deeper appreciation of the human dimensions of the issue.  This will be followed by an exploration of the competing values of truth, justice and mercy in policy advocacy responses.  Ethical aspects and choices will be discussed as well as spiritual principles          to guide decisions.


Music: Discovering a Way to Nurture the Spirit

            This experiential workshop will look at the many dimensions of music – how music outside of the self affects the body, how to find music within oneself, how music nurtures the spirit.  With guitar, singing bowl and hand drums, participants and the leader will explore the gifts of music and the creative possibilities within each one.

Iris Bertrand


Refuah Shleima: A Jewish Perspective on Illness as a Spiritual Path

            Illness affects not only our body but our heart and our spirit.  We will explore the spiritual aspects of illness and healing from a Jewish perspective.  We will draw lessons from Jewish  sources and work with diverse modalities – including art, music, and meditation- to foster spiritual healing.  Participants will be invited to share their own experiences of illness and healing.

Junnifer Judelsohn, LCSW, MSW, JD


Angelina is Dancing: Spirituality and Human Rights in HIV/AIDS Work

            This presentation will focus on three stories gathered during fieldwork in Ghana, Malawi and Uganda implementing workshops on HIV/AIDS, Women and Development.  It will provide insights into how spirituality and human rights intertwine and empower.  The presentation will include thought on HIV/AIDS, Women and Development in Africa as a spiritual, social and economic issue.

Christine Lwanga MSW, MBA

Elizabeth Cooper EdD


Opening Celebration; Brother Joseph Kilkevice of the SHEM Center for Interfaith Spirituality


Friday, June 22, 2007

The Spirituality of Play

            Working with children, some of whom have experienced trauma, often leaves us looking into the eyes of a child who may have becomes spiritually comatose.  As social workers attempting to intervene positively in the lives of these children, we need to nurture their spirituality.  This  workshop will provide an opportunity for participants to explore the spirituality in the act of play as part of this nurturing and healing process.  Please come and be a child, to help a child be!

Trina Laughlin MSW, LCSW-R

Bonnie Collins EdM, MSW, LCSW


Toward Understanding a Tradition-Based Holistic Aboriginal Social Work Practice Model

            This session will outline the four aspects of the self: sprit (spiritual), nature (emotional), character (physical) and intellect (mental) from an Indigenous world view.  The presenter will then examine the spirit as the foundational aspect (essence) and the three remaining aspects of   the self (nature, character, and intellect) as the expressions of the spirit.

Gus Hill MSW


Looking Deeply at Spirituality: Can it be a Force for Social Transformation

            This presentation will review perspectives on why spirituality has re-emerged in social work, and  will initiate a discussion on how we understand spirituality and the roles which spirituality serves  in social work and in society.  It becomes clear that spirituality has many definitions and is a        complex subject.  Spirituality can provide fro emotional expression, meaning, social cohesion and promise.  However the question arises to what extent spirituality consists primarily of  intense feelings and making people feel good, or whether it leads to increased maturity and involvement?

John Coates, PhD


Spiritual and Religious Abuse and Neglect of Children and Adolescents: A National Survey of Clinical Social Workers

            This session offers a preliminary conceptualization of spiritual/religious abuse and neglect of   youth and a 10-item measurement instrument for assessing practitioners’ experiences in this area.   The instrument was used in a recent national study.  The presentation attempts to bridge a gap in       knowledge between current conceptualization of child abuse and neglect to include the spiritual domain.  Participants are encouraged to further the dialogue about this issue as it relates to  spiritually sensitive social work practice and education.

Connie Kvarfordt, PhD


Hope for the Hopeless: Rekindling the Spirit in Clients with Depression

            Our personal experience of tragedy, loss or betrayal is critical to our understanding our clients’  experiences.  This similarity provides the ground for helping.  On the other hand, therapists may also become angry with clients for giving up or giving in to their despair.  Recognizing these moments as unconscious communications from the clients helps us to know the depression from the inside-out.  Then we are truly in a position to offer the necessary balance of hope and  empathy that can turn a difficult situation into a success.

Jim Raines, PhD, ACSW, MDiv


Yin and Yang: Taoist Principles and Social Work Practice

            This presentation will examine the relationships between four Taoist principles: Tz’u (compassion), Wu (intuition), Hsin (inner-harmony) and Hsu (open-mindedness) as they relate to the role of social worker as self-aware and self-reflective participant in the helping process.  The relationship between the chosen Taoist principles and social work practice are revealed through a series of interviews with social work supervisors.

Shawna Margesson MSW, PhD candidate


Spirituality as Connectedness: A Study of the Relationship Between Spirituality and Childhood Abuse

            The presenter completed an investigation of the long term effects of childhood sexual abuse and physical abuse on adult spirituality.  The session is offered as an illustration of the process and the lessons learned by the researcher during the process.  The presenter will introduce a unique scale designed to measure respondents’ connectedness with humanity and report on the effects of   his attempts to reword one scale in particular to increase its inclusiveness.  Finally, a brief   synopsis of the results of the study itself will be presented.

Michael Prior, PhD


A Spirituality Group for Alzheimer’s Patients: The Symbol of the Seasons, The Knowing of the Senses

            The spirituality intervention presented in this session utilizes a non-denominational approach to access and explore the spirituality of Alzheimer’s patients in an acute in-patient psychiatric setting.  The challenge is how to reach this spirituality in this client population.  Nature’s seasons are chosen as the foundation of the four-session intervention because everyday symbols and   rituals help people get in tough with their deepest memories of God and the universe.

Cindy Lawlor, MSW, student


Spirituality for All Times

            Concepts of history animate a civilization’s fundamental perspective on the proper ordering of    God, man, society and world – it’s “spirit.”  This session will argue the relevance of philosopher      Eric Voegelin’s historical interpretation for a spiritually self-aware and competent profession of          social work, with emphasis on Voegelin’s critical appreciation of healthy and flawed responses    to the spiritual condition of humanity.

Michael Forster, PhD


Breathe: Use of Mindfulness, Breath Awareness and Gentle Yoga in Healing Groups for Sexually Abusive Youth…

            This presentation will describe components of successful “Healing Groups” developed for sexually abusive youth who had also experienced maltreatment.  Use of the Trauma Outcome Process and skills of mindfulness, breath awareness and gentle yoga will be explained.  A brief experiential introduction to the skills will be given.  Rationales and resources will be provided.  Successes and limitations will be described.

Cheri Krueckeberg, MDiv, MSW, ACSW


Taking Care of Ourselves: Challenging Our Inner Resources for Effective Practice…

            This practical presentation will demonstrate the powerful outcome that music-focused, self- reflective meditation and breath work can have in effecting change in oneself, collaboratively in  colleagues, and potentially in clients.  The workshop will demonstrate how the Music Impact Inventory Scale can provide both a quantitative and qualitative means of gathering information for enhanced spiritual, self-directed empathy and judicious spiritually-based self-exploration.

Wilfred Gallant, EdD, MSW, ICADC, RSW

Melanie Gallant, PhD


Integrating Contemplative Practices into Social Work Education

            There is currently an interdisciplinary movement toward introducing contemplative practices as   another way of knowing in higher education in order to support more holistic and transformative   learning.  This workshop will review recent developments in this area, present an example of an         “integrated contemplative” course, and provide an opportunity for participants to explore how contemplative practices can enhance their own teaching.

Michael Sheridan, PhD


Ethical and Spiritual Issues Faced by Activists: Despair, Guilt and Relating to the Enemy

            Social work activist and advocates often work for change in arenas where the problems are deeply imbedded in our institutions and where the status quo is supported by entrenched power structures.  Activists may become immobilized by despair or guilt, and face the risk of  demonizing their opponents.  Participants will share experiences of how to cultivate hope,   forgiveness, faith, respect and love.  Music and art activities and resource materials will be provided.

Ann Nichols, DSW, ACSW


Workspace as Sacred Space

            This workshop will explore how to design a sacred space that supports clients and workers in a therapeutic environment.  Examples of design elements discussed will include the use of space, color and light.  Conclusions are based on a review of empirical data supplemented by deductive            reasoning and qualitative observation in a direct practice setting.

Ann Callahan, PhD, LCSW


Valuing and Respecting Differences are Not Enough:  The need for a human-centric perspective…

            Social work theorizing and practice in relation to diverse populations focus on recognizing, valuing and respecting differences.  It will be argued that we cannot build meaningful relationships, even with clients, by simply learning to value and respect differences without regard and appreciation for what we also have in common as humans.  A human-centric  perspective is introduced to complement the existing perspectives.  Examples of how this            approach may be integrated into existing theory and practice will be drawn from the areas  interpersonal and inter-group relationships and conflict resolution strategies.

Dixon Sookraj, PhD


The Challenges and Helpfulness of Holistic Experiential Practices – Diana Coholic, PhD, RSW

Dr. Coholic’s research investigates the helpfulness of holistic arts-based group work for the development of self-awareness and self-esteem.  Drawing on this work, she will discuss some of the challenges and the effectiveness of spiritually-sensitive practice.  Among other issues, this discussion will consider the following:  Spiritually-influenced practice as alternative health care; transpersonal practice; mindfulness-based practices; dream work; and evidence based practice.


S/he Who Sings Prays Twice

The musical form of the chant is an ancient and universal expression of spirituality and culture found in Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Native American, Hindu, African and Goddess/Earth traditions.  It is a spiritual practice that facilitates movement into a deeper relationship with our ultimate reality, our authentic selves, our community and all of Creation through prayer, meditation and sound.  It provides a pathway to altered states and the sacred, and a means to facilitate healing, creativity and a sense of communion.  This workshop will provide participants with experience in the use of the chant as a personal communal spiritual practice.  It is designed for non-singers and singers alike.

Teri Kennedy, MSW, LCSW


Meaning, Purpose, Hope and Strength: Drawing on Your Spirit

This curricula-model workship addresses the importance of spiritual self awareness in social work education.  The workshop presents a model that encourages students to develop sensitivity and respect for diversity in spirituality among others.  Participants will experience a model of human diversity based in a “Coat of Arms” exercise.  Participants will then explore their own spirituality through a hands-on spirituality activity.

Karen Stubenbort, PhD, LCSW

Michael D. Paulus, PhD, ACSW


Preparing Students for Spiritually Sensitive Practice with Terminally Ill and Grieving Clients

Curriculum related to working with terminally ill and bereaved persons is increasingly a needed addition to master’s programs in social work, as in curriculum in spiritually sensitive social work practice.  Although there is increased interest in these topics, until recently there have been few models or guidelines for social work educators, and most social work faculty have received little or no training in these areas.  To help address this gap, this workshop will provide a model for a master’s level course in Death and Dying that integrates student growth in self-awareness with social work theory and practice.

Sarah Andrews, ABD, MA, MSSA, LISW


The Spiritual Cauldron : Spiritual Diversity and Social Welfare Issues in South Korea

This presentation introduces the range of spiritual diversity in South Korea, including Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism and Shamanism.  It explains primary tenets pertaining to compassion and justice in each tradition in relation to current issues of social welfare.  The presentation also serves as an example of designing an educational module that helps introduce students to international and cross-cultural understanding of spiritual diversity in social welfare.  Participants are invited to discuss how this might stimulate their own efforts to present global perspectives on spiritual diversity in social work.  The presentation is based on 30 years of East/West comparative study, with a focus on South Korea.


The Importance of Self-Compassion to Social Work Students: Empirical Evidence

Serving the most needy and underprivileged members of our society may exact the costs of personal distress and emotional contagion, which eventually result in social worker ineffectiveness and burnout.  In two empirical studies we found lack of self-compassion (ie: over-identification) increased the risk of mental distress and emotional contagion in social work students.  Implications for social work education will be discussed.

Yu-Wen Ying, PhD

Meekung Han, PhD


The Honor and Art of Spiritual Guidance

In this workshop, participants will learn about the practice of spiritual guidance – a relationship founded on the seeker’s desire for a closer relationship with their God.  Participants will also have an opportunity to reflect in small groups on their own spiritual experience.  Finally, professional training resources will be shared as places where social work skills can meet this ancient art.’

Tim McGowan, MSW, LMSW


The Helpfulness of Holistic Arts-based Group Work for Children and Youth in Foster Care

This session will present qualitative research findings from a research program that is investigating how holistic arts-based group work is helpful for improving self-awareness/esteem.  The focus is on our work with children living in foster care.  We examine how the children discuss the spirituality in the group work, and other issues that have arisen in our work with this challenging population.

Diana Coholic, PhD

            Sean Lougheed and Julie LeBreton


Empathy and Intuition: Parallel and Essential Elements of Practice

A spiritual sense of oneness may accompany an expanded awareness which comes from the intuitive process.  The presenters draw a parallel between the empathic and intuitive processes and then delineate how the social work classroom and field instructors can foster and enhance students’ awareness and utilization of their empathic/intuitive abilities toward the maximized empowerment of both student and client.

Nikki Wingerson, PhD

Priscilla Smith, PhD


Walking the Camino de Santiago de Compostela: Metaphors for Life’s Path

This session describes the experiences of a pilgrim who walked the Camino de Santiago de Compostela (Way of St. James) in northern Spain during the 2006-07 winter.  Lessons learned, realizations reached and metaphors identified during the pilgrimage that have relevance to the path called Life and the application of these experiences to social work practice are discussed.  Experienceds with synchrocities, beneficial exchanges with strangers, contrasting of cultures, and the transitory characteristic of all experiences offer application in the work that social workers perform.

Rebecca Vela, PhD, LMSW-AP


Aging and Spirituality: Responsible and Effective Practice with Older Adults

Social workers need to be prepared to provide services that are responsible, sensitive and effective to what is spiritually meaningful in the lives of older adults.  This workshop provides an opportunity for participants to reflect upon their spiritual experiences and religious beliefs and to integrate these perspectives into their practice.  Models for spiritually sensitive assessment and interventions will be presented.  The workshop is appropriate for all social workers regardless of their religious or spiritual beliefs.

Gary Behrman, MDiv, LCSW


A Rule of Life: A Tool for Cultivating Spiritual Self

Social workers frequently struggle with the stressors of time constraints, inadequate resources, challenging times and circumstances, and the impact of inadequate social welfare policies and systems.  Overwhelming demands and inadequate attention to personal and professional boundaries, self-care, and the spiritual needs of the social worker are all major factors in burnout and diminished efficacy in practice.  This interactive workshop will focus on participants’ development of an individual Rule of Life based on each individual’s spiritual traditions and perceived needs.

Dave Luke Henton, LCSW


Oppression and Anti-Oppression in Organized Spirituality: An Example from Christianity

In this workshop issues of oppression and anti-oppression will be explored in the Christian faith.  It is shown historically how Christian leaders have been found on both sides of debates such as apartheid and the civil rights movement.  The presenters explore the profound challenge to their own Christian faith caused by oppression instigated by the church, and share the encouragement they have gained from moments when the church and Christian leaders have taken a stand against oppression.  The workshop engages participants in exploring the ways people of faith can better understand oppression and more consistently adopt an anti-oppressive stance.

Gary Dumbrill, PhD, MSW

Winnie Lo, MDiv, MSW


Spirituality and Posttraumatic Growth in a Taiwanese Natural Disaster

This presentation will explore the role of social work in natural disasters by examining the relationship between spirituality and the posttraumatic growth of people in a collectivist culture.  A retrospective study was conducted among people in Taiwan who had survived a major earthquake five years earlier.  Results indicate that spiritual beliefs have a significant effect on posttraumatic growth.

Li-Ju Jang, PhD


The Impact of Spirituality on Social Work Students’ Appraisal and coping with Challenges at their Internships

This presentation describes a quantitative/qualitative study that explored the relationshiop of social work students’ spiritual beliefs and practices to their appraisal and coping with challenges at their internships.  Results showed that despite the perception that spirituality-related content was of little relevance to the curriculum, a greater sense of spirituality was associated with increased mindfulness and compassion towards self and others, along with planning and seeking support when facing stressful situations.

Dina Redman, MSW, MPH, PhD


Spiritual Leadership and Holistic Social Work

The presenter defines and describes the developmental stages of spiritual leadership as they apply to multi-level social work activities for influencing progressive changes in various client systems.  She maintains that the conceptual significance of holistic social work approaches can be deepened further when the perspective of spiritual leadership is applied to holistic social work methods.

Sondra Do, PhD


Saturday June 23, 2007

Breakfast, music/meditation

Keynote Address – Harold Koenig, MD


Creating an Environment for Children to Become Their Whole-Selves

The presenter is a First Nations Social Worker in a Northern School Division of Canada, where school/guidance counselors and teachers refer children who display behavioural problems.  Her presentation outlines the holistic approach and personal life experiences used alongside social work practices.  More “heart centered” methods of healing techniques are used rather than “mind-centered” methods of western approaches.  The spiritual update is done through “energy check-ins.”  Teachers frequently report that they notice remarkable changes in the child, where there is calmness, gentleness and more focus on their work.  In other words, the children are responding to the energy work.

Marlene Carriere, BSW


Spiritual Assessment and the JCAHO Standards

In 2001, the Joint Commission, the most prominent health care accrediting body in the U.S., revised its accreditation standards to require spiritual assessments.  To help practitioners comply with these standards, this presentation clarifies the distinctions between spirituality and religion, provides five rationales for conducting a spiritual assessment, reviews the JCAHO requirements and summarizes two brief and five comprehensive assessment instruments.

David Hodge


A Brief Experience of Two Types of Meditation

This workshop provides the opportunity for participants to receive both information and experience with two types of meditation.  Two interventions – mantra meditation and mindfulness meditation – will be described.  Participants will be led through the interventions of their choice, step by step.  Examples of research, and information on teaching social work and spirituality will be available.

Dhira Crunkilton, MSW, PhD


Support and Sustenance: Australian Catholic Sisters’ Experiences in Social Care Work

The session presents findings from interviews with Catholic sisters in Australia about their experiences in various fields of social care work over the latter half of the twentieth century, focusing on what helped and supported them.  Factors identified included: those intrinsic to their work; religious faith; aspects of being a member of a religious order; and support from others outside the church.

Lesley Hughes, PhD


Spirituality Based Values, Cultural, Diversity and Prevention

A postsecondary course developed entitled Spiritually Based Values, Cultural Diversity, and Prevention will be discussed in terms of needs assessment and campus wide survey data.  The course addresses the practice of both spirituality and substance use from a holistic perspective of multicultural diversity, healthy lifestyle, personal responsibility, and service to strengthen community.  A course vignette for small group discussion will be provided.

Scott Anstadt, PhD, DCSW, LSCSW, RAODC


Interest Group: Research in Spirituality


Integrating Spirituality and Neuroscience into the BioPsychoSocial

This workshop formulates an integrative, multidimensional model of psychotherapy that endorses the selective convergence of the patient’s neurobiologic, sensori-somatic, intrapyschic, interpersonal and transpersonal dimensions of experience.  The workshop participant is provided a lens with which to view the convergence of the transpersonal and neurobiological dimensions of the patient’s experience, thereby enabling the patient’s innate, multidimensional pathways of healing to unfold.

Davina Gabriela, MSW, LCSC


Mindfulness and Compassion Exercises in the Classroom: Recognizing Commonalities While Respecting Diversity

This presentation will review Buddhist principles as they relate to mindfulness practices, including a mindfulness exercise and a compassion exercise, as facilitated with social work students.  Feedback from students will be included, demonstrating the usefulness of these approaches to social work training.  Links will be made to other spiritual traditions, particularly in relation to Christian contemplative and centering prayer.

Laura Beres, MSW, RSW, PhD


Interest Group: Holy Moments in Practice


Walking the Path To Forgiveness

This interactive workshop will provide participants with current research and literature about the concept and process of forgiveness within significant relationships.  The benefits, challenges and implications of using forgiveness within one’s clinical practice will be explored through small group exercises, discussion and incorporation of video vignettes.

Juanita Lawson, PhD candidate


Yogic Strategies for Managing Acute Stress Disorder and PTSD

This experiential workshop will discuss the three yogic practices of asana, pranyama, and meditation, and demonstrate ways these practices can reduce and manage stress.  The goal is to introduce yogic practices as effective tools that can be used to reduce stress and support resilience in clients experiencing acute stress disorder and post traumatic stress disorder.

Pauline Everette, LMSW, PhD


Transforming Social Work through Practical Spirituality

The objective of this experiential workshop is to allow participants to explore more deeply the meaning of practical spirituality and how it can be incorporated into social work practice.  The basic premise of the workshop is that spirituality is understood through experience and recalling these experiences can be used in a practical way to facilitate deep healing.  When we return to the question of what is healing, and what part spirituality plays in social work, we can begin to glimpse how spirituality can lead to transformative changes at the individual, societal and environmental level.

Monica Maheshwari, MA, BA and Liliana Chethuan, MS, BA


What’s Migrant Religion Got To Do With It: a Methodological Review of Qualitative Works…

This presentation describes a review and critique of all current qualitative works from various disciplines – sociology, anthropology and seminary/theology – on Southeast Asian religious phenomenon in both the US and Canada.  The presenter will point out gaps and discuss future directions.  Based on social work mission/values, this session is aimed to promote a transdisciplinary (not interdisciplinary) and collaborative research approach to bridge the gap between epistemology and methodology as well as between theory and practice to facilitate work with minority groups such as those from Southeast Asia.

Quin-Tram Nguyen, MSW, PhD student


Spirituality, Race Work and Religious Feminism in the First School of Social Work for African-American Church Women

This presentation is based upon original archival and oral history research on the Bishop Tuttle School of Social Work in Raleigh, North Carolina.  This school is of great historical significance since it was the first social work education program established specifically for African-American church women in the South during segregation.  The history of the school’s origin and life contain important lessons for today regarding the role of spirituality in promoting social and religious activism to combat racial prejudice and segregation.  The history of its demise contains important lessons about intersecting politics of race, gender, religion and geographic region on social work educational programs.  The presentation includes photos and oral history interview excerpt.

John Kayser, PhD


Interest Group: Developing Courses in Spirituality and Social Work