Helping Children Work Through Their Pain

Estela Magana MSW, Outpatient Bilingual Wraparound Therapist

Interview from Social Worker Community Conversation

"A couple of months ago, I was approached by a previous client and he wrote this thank you paragraph saying, 'I don't know if you realize the impact you made in my life. If it wasn't for you, I wouldn't have gone into the force and served for my country.' You hope that you plant a little seed. That was the proudest moment 'cuz you rarely get to see that." - Estela

Every year in March, National Social Work Month is celebrated to honor all those who work to empower youth. In celebration of National Social Work Month, Estela Magana, MSW and Outpatient Bilingual Wraparound Therapist, shares how her work is changing lives.

About the Social Work Profession

A social worker is a mental health professional who helps people with a broad range of issues, including psychological, financial, health, relationship and substance abuse problems. In almost every school, mental health clinic, hospital, nonprofit agency and local government there is at least one social worker. Like the diverse advocates heard in the compilation piece, there are many different types of social workers that work to help youth:

Medical and Public Health Social Workers
Those who specialize in medical or public health social work offer psychosocial services to individuals, families, and groups who are affected by acute, chronic, and terminal illnesses. These services might involve providing psychological counseling, connecting clients with resources in the community, and helping families who are caring for a sick loved one.

Child, Family, and School Social Workers
Child, family, and school social workers work with children and families. Some work in school settings to help children with academic, social, and emotional issues. Others may work with foster children, help arrange adoptions, and assist single parents.

Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers
Mental health and substance abuse social workers assess and treat individuals suffering from mental health problems or addiction and substance abuse issues. Social workers in this specialty area may provide crisis counseling, individual therapy, group therapy, skills education, and psychosocial rehabilitation services.

National Professional Social Work Month happens every March where social workers across the country and their allies to turn the spotlight on the profession and highlight the important contributions they make to society. Every day, the nation’s 650,000 social workers act as advocates, champions and leaders who make our society a better place to live. To learn more about how these leaders work to help improves the lives of youth, visit our Learn page.

Why Not You?

Volunteering as a mentor or becoming an informal mentor to a young person is a valuable step in positively affecting your community. It only takes one caring adult to make a difference in the life of a foster youth. Find out how you can get involved at

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