Letters to the Editor (July 2008)

Helping Iowa

The State of Iowa has been hard hit with an ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] raid and detention of undocumented immigrant workers and their families, a devastating EF5 tornado and most recently record-breaking floods. These all occurred within the span of 2 months.

Local social workers, Red Cross social workers and social workers from across the country have come to Iowa to help. As an Iowa resident, I want to express my personal and professional thanks. I continue to be impressed with how social workers can meet the various challenges and are willing to "jump right in" to meet people's needs.

Those of us who are social workers seem to be able to recognize each other prior to formal introductions by the values demonstrated, the creativity to meet people where they are and ability to provide services in difficult circumstances. We appreciate all the helping professions who have come to help, but I see something uniquely different in the social work perspective.

For all the criticism we as social workers get and give to each other, we can also appreciate our profession and the people who practice social work at all levels. Thanks to all who came to Iowa to help.

Susan Kosche Vallem, Ed.D., LISW
Wartburg College, Waverly, Iowa