Staff Stories, June 2020
Ms. Luanne Tan
Social Worker, Residential Services
Q: You started as a Case Worker with Residential Services after graduating from school, how has the journey been for you?
Given that this is my first job since graduating from university, it has been a steep learning curve. I always aimed to make a positive impact on others’ lives through the work that I do and this role gives me many of such opportunities.
From experience, I have noticed that no two clients share the same exact background and the problems they face are unique. This factor among others has constantly challenged me to adapt and further strengthen my skills to ensure the best intervention is accorded.
Having journeyed with numerous clients through our residential services, I have been encouraged personally by every client – knowing our work counts toward something in the grander scheme of their lives. Although it has been full of challenges and hard work where I may not see immediate outcomes, it has been a very rewarding and purposeful journey for me.
Q: What has changed for you professionally comparing to when you just started your career 4 years ago?
There has been a shift in my approach towards clients, where I utilise a strengths-based approach – an approach that identifies the potential each client has while respecting their vulnerabilities and rights to make their own decisions.
Having been through professional training, I have also adopted a person-in-environment viewpoint – to be able to view the client, not by their issues, but as individuals interconnected with their environment e.g. family, school, community. This has enabled me to craft a more holistic and effective intervention.
Q: How has Boys’ Town supported in your growth in the areas of training and development?
Within the organization, I have been blessed to work with a clinical supervisor who provides a safe learning space to reflect and advance my social work knowledge and skills. Working alongside like-minded seniors and colleagues keeps me accountable and encouraged to continue the work that we do.
I have also been sent for many external trainings to further enhance my repertoire of intervention skills with clients. Opportunities for greater exposure in the social work field have also been introduced, and that has allowed me to broaden my knowledge and professional network.
Above all Boys’ Town has been supportive of me furthering my studies in social work which has allowed me to finish up my final year in Master of Social Work.