Words of Groupwork

The Global Group Work Project convened 10 Action Research Workshops from 2005-2008, in a wide range of venues, including 5 in the US, 1 in South Africa, 1 in Germany, 1 in Italy, 1 in England, and 1 at the United Nations.  Almost all Workshops began with participants sharing a word or phrase that captured their feeling or thought about Groupwork, in their own language.  Here they are in a Groupwork Poem:

 Groupwork!  What it Means to Me

  • Gruppen sind wie “et Leben” (groups are like life)
  • We all are part of many groups including the world family.
  • Groups are as much about the political as they are about the social and the personal.
  • A group is a most important social unit. We all live in groups (originally written in Hebrew).
  • Gruppen sind mehr als die summe ihren Mitglieden.
  • Groups are fun!
  • Mutual aid
  • Good groups run on clear purposes: When we are together we are more than when we are apart.
  • Group can oppress as well as liberate
  • Define purpose.
  • What happens inside (members) and outside (community)
  • Group: the building blocks of community, the crock pot for social development.
  • Groups offer individuals and communities to grow, communicate, collaborate and heal. They are an effective vehicle for many human endeavors.
  • Mehr als 2 sind ein grouppe.
  • Promotes inter-dependence.
  • Wenn eine alleine traumt ist esnus ein Traum ;wenn viele gemeinsam traumen ist das der begin einer neuen Wirklichkeit.
  • Les groupes peuvent changes le monde.
  • Groups are exciting, self-challenging and fulfilling.
  • Groups are what is done in communities- the best way to do social work.
  • Strengthens community/ mutual caring/ shared responsibility.
  • Connections
  • Groups are a ”natural” form for human rights.
  • Groups create more impact on people’s life.
  • Groups remind us that without others we are dead.
  • Ability to use experiences of oppression to strengthen professional identity.
  • A group I had originally formed was replicated and improved by my colleague and I’ve had a chance to see it grow!
  • The Munich surprise!
  • The fascination of change from a ‘me – position’ into ‘us-feeling’.
  • Class experience where ‘in action’ students’ experience of ‘intervention’ of behaviors for 1st time – one of those ‘wow’ moments!
  • NJ is hosting the 29th symposium!
  • Increasing interest in diversity in rural Minnesota tasks groups.
  • The readiness of members to show their emotions.
  • The possibility of the personal becoming political!
  • Kids building strengths finding their voice reclaiming relationship & families.
  • Students in a masters’ group work course not only discovered the joy of learning social group work principles, but also renewed their awareness of & commitment to social work by seeing the group work principles within that broader context.          
  • A ‘new’ group forming out of an ‘old’ one.
  • Witnessing ‘sparkling moments’…”ah-ha” – movement in the change circle within an individual & group members / process.
  • Diversity of point of views.
  • Attended IFSW in Munich!
  • Belonging to a global family and experiencing the feeling and the spirit of group work.
  • Belonging to a community of passionate, committed and politically concerned individuals across international borders & traditions
  • Integration / gruppe; Laubor marked/arbejds markedet  
  • Samuinna       (?Sign’fur H. Ingo’hsdoth:I?)
  • Release (In Hebrew: Group therapy – Relief)         
  • Mutual help                
  • Inclusion        
  • Support
  • Loyaal zỹn     
  • Powerful          
  • Partnership/Imeitheal           
  • Parent groups           
  • TZI      
  • Fun     
  • Sharing
  • Possibility
  • Love
  • Humanism
  • Invigorating
  • The power of the group
  • Strengths perspectives
  • Universal       
  • Mutual            
  • Empowering
  • Normalizing   
  • Mutual            
  • Ujama/Brotherhood      
  • Synergy         
  • Unity   
  • Celebration   
  • Empowering     
  • Community       
  • Process – Tahalich              
  • Life                 
  • Strength         
  • Colorful          
  • Energizing     
  • Exhilarating   
  • Healing
  • Motivating
  • Anticipation
  • Sharing
  • Mutual Aid
  • Tool
  • Efficient
  • Messy
  • Austenite
  • Empowering
  • Collaboration
  • Love
  • Sharing
  • Make things happen
  • Ambivalent
  • Excited
  • Essential/vital
  • Under utilized
  • Challenging/stimulating
  • Energizing
  • Sharing
  • Support
  • Interaction
  • Complex
  • Mutuality
  • Peoples’
  • Together
  • Meitheal (Irish)
  • Collective
  • Empowering
  • Fun
  • Peers
  • Challenging
  • Partnership
  • Learning
  • Community
  • Teamwork
  • Responsive
  • Synergy
  • Sharing & Fun
  • Innovation
  • Dinamika
  • Together
  • Like minds
  • Group Cohesion
  • Lets HITCH-fun
  • Synergy
  • Two
  • Discovery journey

Please contribute your word or phrase —  and help build this groupwork poem.  Also, please share why you chose this word or phrase!

Thanks from the Global Group Work Partners 

2 Responses to Words of Groupwork

  1. Bala Raju says:

    Nepal is full of small groups.
    for us group work is life line and the practice of group work is a science, art and passion!!

    • Anna Ortega says:

      Yes! I work in Brooklyn, New York in the U.S. To me, groups are everything! Group is how we learn, how we heal, grow, destroy, recover. It’s about finding out about our personal power and the groups power to mutually influence the whole. I do believe it is a science, but in some of the most natural ways that everything has a logic and amazing intricacy to follow within it. Groups are the most natural and intentional things we can do as human beings.
      Anna Ortega

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