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UNICEF and National University of Uzbekistan, with assistance from University of Columbia, forge partnership to create a new cadre of social workers for Uzbekistan
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Uzbekistan, in close collaboration with the Ministry of Higher and Secondary Specialized Education and the National University of Uzbekistan launched a new programme to expand and professionalize the training of social workers in the country.
The Programme, called “Uzbekistan Social Work Education for Excellence” will be implemented by the National University of Uzbekistan, with support from UNICEF who have engaged Columbia University of New York to provide expertise. It brings together decision makers, academicians and practitioners to develop the profession of social work to provide social protection for vulnerable groups in the population.
In 2017, the National University of Uzbekistan, in cooperation with UNICEF, opened the Social Work Department. Now social workers will benefit from enhanced training in how to prevent the unnecessary separation of children from families, assist vulnerable families, and ensure the rights of every child to protective family care and protection from violence, abuse and neglect.
The new programme will assess work functions across relevant ministries and support them to create standard operating procedures for social work. It will further strengthen the teaching of social work at the National University and will create a certificated course, developed with Family Centres.
“I believe, our partnership, coupled with assistance from one of the most respected schools of social work in the world, Columbia University, can contribute enormously to the quality of the education and the practice of social work in Uzbekistan, said Sascha Graumann, Representative of UNICEF in Uzbekistan. He also added that “It can help establish this profession as an indispensable part of the social protection system.”
"Our society faces new challenges which require retaliatory measures, increase the capacity of psychologists and social workers,” said Ms. Tanzila Narbaeva, Deputy Prime Minister, Chairman of the Women's Committee of Uzbekistan. Ms. Narbaeva stressed that “one of the key areas that will enhance social protection is the development of professionals in the field of social work. We know that in many countries social workers help vulnerable families."
Ms. Narbaeva also noted that the Government is working in close cooperation with UN agencies, academic institutions and civil society institutions to promote social work in the country to achieve the Strategy of Action for 2017-2021. In addition, the work is in line with the Resolution of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan No. # 2909 of 20.04.2017 “On measures for further development the High Education System” of April 20, 2017.