Veronika Aresta is an internal doctoral student of the Department of Social Work at the Faculty of Arts, Charles University in Prague. She currently works as an expert in the Institute of Sociology of the Czech Academy of Sciences (dep. socioeconomics of housing) and works as a Housing Advisor at the Agency for Social Inclusion (Office of the Government of the Czech Republic). She focuses on local social policies and their setting in the process of ending homelessness.
OBJECTIVES: The aim of the article is to capture the practice of social workers in shelters in their
current form through the needs/goals of cooperation that refuge clients ask for during individual
planning. THEORETICAL BASE: The problem is related to a number of disadvantages
that clients have to face. Systemic inequality is considered to be pivotal, causing clients to face
unaffordability of housing, which they cannot overcome on their own. METHODS: The needs/
goals of cooperation were analysed by a questionnaire survey, which was always attended by one
worker from a shelter for mothers with children in the Czech Republic. OUTCOMES: The
research provided a description of the areas of needs/goals of cooperation. The dominant role is
played by the needs that are fulfilled in the form of social counselling in the area of housing, dealing
with common matters, childcare, financial management. SOCIAL WORK IMPLICATIONS:
The findings provide information on the form of social work in shelters and can contribute to
the education of social workers specialising in helping homeless people. It draws attention to
the link between social workers seeking housing for their clients and calls for a social policy in
municipalities that can change the situation in localities.
shelter homes, social services, clients of shelter homes, needs, goals, homelessness, poverty