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A Guide to Essential Human Services (2nd ed.).

A Guide to Essential Human Services (2nd ed.). Frederic G. Reamer. Washington, DC: NA S W Press, 2010, 196 pages. ISBN 978-0-87101-397-2. $25.99 paperback.

This revised edition of Frederic G. Reamer's A Guide to Essential Human Services is an ideal resource for those seeking information on local, state, and government assistance programs. Social workers, social work educators, and agencies providing services to individuals in need will all benefit from the information provided in this book. It includes a large list of programs and resources available for a wide range of populations.

Reamer has divided the book into sections organized by types of programs offered and groups in need of particular services. These range from mental health services to legal and dispute resolution services and from services to military personnel and veterans to those provided for immigrants and refugees. Each chapter begins with an overview of the programs available for specific needs or populations, discusses the services and benefits provided, lists the eligibility criteria to receive these services, and provides contact information. The chapters end with useful tips, providing readers with additional information and resources such as Web site addresses.

This book will be a beneficial tool for social workers in many fields. Interns, beginning social workers, and social workers providing case management in a variety of agencies will all be able to use this guide to determine clients' eligibility for a broad range of programs and services. Social service organizations will benefit from having this volume on hand as a quick reference guide to add to their resource lists. Compact and pleasant to hold, the book can easily be carried from place to place by busy, mobile social work professionals, and it will take up minimal space on a desk or bookshelf.

Social work educators can assign this book in introductory practice and policy courses. Practice classes can use it for assignments, such as community case studies and individual and family psychosocial assessments. Students can use the book to identify which services may be appropriate for different populations. Instructors in policy classes can integrate the book's content into discussions about such policies as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Social Security Disability Insurance, and the Federal Earned Income Tax Credit. This book will also help students in introductory social work classes familiarize themselves with the resources available to assist vulnerable populations. These and other specific programs and policies are outlined in the book, and for more in-depth reading, students can consult the Web sites listed at the end of chapters.

For many social workers, keeping track of the different resources available at local, state, and federal agencies can be challenging. Reamer has provided a clear, concise guide that is easy to use and has up-to-date listings. As the title suggests, this guide is essential for those individuals learning about or working in human services.

Shauna P.. Acquavita

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore

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Author:Acquavita, Shauna P.
Publication:Social Work
Article Type:Book review
Date:Oct 1, 2010
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