Human Mental Health Service Worker

Skills & Characteristics of Mental Health Human Service Workers

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Skills & Characteristics of Mental Health Human Service Workers Human Service Workers are made up of a group of people that choice to help those in need. Those service workers that decide to work with the mentally disabled are very special people. The workers are trained to assist with the emotional issues that usually bring the client to the point they are at. There are also other causes that can be a part of the reason behind the challenges people with mental illnesses deal with. There could be illnesses that are passed down from previous generations or chemical imbalances at play. In order to be a successful mental health human service worker, there are traits that one must have. In the following paper, it will become clear what skills and characteristics a Mental Health Human Service Worker maintains. Human Service Workers in the Mental Health Field are social workers who strive to make more productive options for their clients.

They help the client obtain the treatment required for better health. There are also some cases where family connections are needed to assist in the client being restored to his or her best mental health state. Human Service Workers become a part of their client’s life in some cases can even be more like a life coach because the client depends on them for a chance to feel whole again mentally. When a person struggles with mental illness, there is a battle for that person as they are trying to find their place and feeling different is very difficult to handle. This is where Human Service Workers come into play. Service Workers have to have compassion for others and they have to have a desire to help others. These are characteristics that are a must in order to be a good Human Service Worker. The Human Service Worker is like a life coach to the client. Each session has to provide them with a life skill and an assignment for them to complete. This is part of the recovery process because there is an ending to the process. There are stages and with each stage there are lessons that are learned.

Even though the Service Worker become a major part of the client’s life as the process continues and draws to an end, the client needs to be prepared to work without the Service Worker and understand they must take what they have learned and continue to use those lessons in the everyday life to keep growing and bettering themselves. Education is a key factor for an effective Human Service Worker, there are many years of schooling that are required. Training and knowledge is just the beginning of what is needed to be successful in the Human Service Field. A Human Service Worker must be able to put personal prejudices aside to be able to help his or her client in an appropriate manner. Putting aside personal prejudices is important but doesn’t mean putting common sense aside. Ethics are another key point to success. By having ethics, it enables you to see the entire situation just as it is, know there are things that may not be normal but, at the same time understanding that what makes there be needs for Service Workers. Finally, not being judgmental is very important because your clients are in need of your help for a reason, the last thing they need is to feel judge by the one person that is there to help them.

Education is important however, personal experience is also an advantage that can help the Human Service Worker relate to what the client is experiencing. By being able to relate to your client, it enables you to be able to read between the lines as the client does not always have the ability to say what is bothering them. Sometimes they are talking in circles and personal experiences make it possible for the Service Worker to read between the lines and pull out the causes to the problems the client is dealing with. According to the community support skills standards, there are critical areas of competence such as Participant Empowerment, Community Networking, and Advocacy (NOHC). These are all areas that are very important in the Human Service field. Participant empowerment is allowing the client to be a part of the program including what are the best ways to proceed.

The client needs to feel they still have control over their own recovery. Yes, it is the Human Service Worker’s place to lead them in the right direction that will put them back on the path to recovery however, it is vital that the client be allowed to also make some decisions in the process. Community networking also is important in that most clients are unaware of what services are available for them to take advantage of. With the education the Service Worker has, they are also made aware of the different services available, working with these other programs, learning which ones are more valuable in each client situation. Advocacy is another way that the Service Worker enables the client to heal. Advocating for your client is in a sense is being their voice in a time when they are not able to. This is a huge part of what the client needs, they need to feel there is someone there for them in a time of need. Skills can be developed to help in the formation of a successful human service worker by taking classes, furthering education, training courses, and personal experience. Keeping up to date with the changes that take place in this field is very important. Knowing what the latest studies are in the field and even latest treatment plans can assist any human service worker to do their job more effectively and even help them open their mind a little bit more than before this training.

There are some people that are natural born helpers in this field. While he or she may feel like they are helping it is important that they also have the education to be able to assist clients. It is true that there are people born to help others and in doing so makes them happy and complete. A natural born helper seems to be more successful in the human service field simply because have the trait of helping others and this is an area they are very comfortable with. There are many different areas where Human Service Workers can assist the mental ill such as Community Mental Health Centers, Youth Services, and Halfway Houses or Prisons. It is clear as to why there would be a need in the mental health centers and prisons but, you may be asking why would there be a need in youth services areas. Drugs and alcohol abuse could be a contributing factor as to why a client may be dealing with mental health issues. Drugs and excessive alcohol could cause the body to go out of sink and there can be major affects on the brain. Clients that have addictions which cause them to be paranoid and can even cause them to do things that they would not do in a normal frame of mind.

When dealing with clients in this situation, it is important to first place them in an area to dry them out, then you can deal with the client through rehab programs and education. Within the Community Mental Health Center, determining what the cause of the problem is the first step in beginning the recovery process. Depending on what the root of the evil is will determining what program is best for the client. With the halfway house, it is clear that an addiction or crime is apparent so first going back into the client’s child hood to see what caused the client to do what he or she has done. Afterwards, the path of treatment would be different because there are several things to consider. As it has been clearly laid out, being a Human Service Worker requires being a person that cares for others, doesn’t judge, and has the knowledge needed to help their client again become a productive member of society. In some cases medication is required and in others, simply getting the root of the problem and helping the client learn to face that problem, learning how to deal with it is the key to success.


National Organization for Human Services. (n.d.). What is Human Services. Retrieved from

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