SRV study tip #2

I was at 2 different PASSING workshops fairly recently and as always I was struck at the power, clarity and utility of the PASSING manual and workshop for raising consciousness, deepening one’s understanding of SRV, helping one to step into the shoes of vulnerable people (interpersonal identification), seeing the distinction between programmatic and non-programmatic concerns, and so on.

I thought that over the next few weeks and months I would write a few PASSING-specific posts to add to our ongoing ‘SRV study tip’ series. So, get out your PASSING manuals and read along! If you have any thoughts, comments or ideas about PASSING, please share them with us.

One of the major premises of Social Role Valorization is that the two overarching strategies for crafting valued social roles are image enhancement and competency enhancement (2004 SRV monograph by W. Wolfensberger: pp. 62-73). This twofold strategy is reflected in the construct of the PASSING tool and manual itself. For example, PASSING is divided into 42 ratings which represent 42 specific elements of service provision. Looking at these ratings from the broadest perspective, they are divided into image-related ratings (all numbered beginning with a ‘1’) and competency-related ratings (all numbered beginning with a ‘2’). For example, see pages 41-51 and 283-285 in the 2007 PASSING manual.

Even this simple division of image and competency enhancement is useful in terms of SRV understanding, teaching and implementation. For example, rather than make human service decisions based on a single criterion, the very structure of PASSING teaches us to make necessary distinctions, to look at multiple programmatic criteria, and to properly balance all the relevant programmatic criteria/elements. If we want to apply SRV, then we don’t just think about helping people to become more competent, we also must keep in mind the imagery that surrounds people; and vice versa.

You might want to consider the service efforts you are involved in day-to-day, week-to-week, month-to-month and year-to-year, and try to discern the ways that they touch on 1) issues of imagery and 2) issues of competency.

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