MISSION AND HISTORY
As social work students in the midst of a pandemic, many of us find ourselves out of an internship and in what can only be described as educational limbo. Therefore, in a place of isolation, we asked ourselves… how can we help? That is when we came up with the interim project, GiftsofGab.org.
GiftsofGab.org is an interim volunteer call-based companion coordination that connects social work students with those in need of social interaction to combat the negative effects loneliness can have on long term health.
Goals of Gifts of Gab
Aid in alleviating the negative effects of social isolation
Social isolation is a major health problem among older adults, and it is known to lead to detrimental health conditions. According to the National Institute on Aging (2019), social isolation will impact the health, well-being, and quality of life of numerous older and other age adults now and in the foreseeable future. Due to mandated social distancing resulting from the coronavirus, older adults are and will be spending more time alone and without much or any social interaction of any kind.
Providing student interns with the opportunity to continue their fieldwork
Due to the restrictions around the coronavirus, many students that are interning in various social work settings are now unable to return to their field placements. Nonetheless, students are still required to complete a certain amount of hours in order to graduate and to obtain a social work license. And, perhaps more importantly, students are also in a state of limbo wanting to help but are unsure how.
Katie Maroldi MSW Student
Carolyn G. Peabody, Ph.D., LCSW, ACSW