Greater numbers of children across the age spectrum are being identified as needing mental health assessment, intervention, and service, thus straining the capacities of practitioners and agencies. Withstanding these potential setbacks are the strength of the therapeutic relationship and the strength of relational connections with children, parents, families, and systems. Cohen Konrad's text is grounded in humanism and the traditional social work theories of
relationship with emphasis on three core concepts-relational connection, evidence-guided knowledge, and reflexivity-all of which are necessary to maintain a successful social worker-child-family dynamic.
Child and Family Practice: A Relational Perspective is an essential text that presents important guidelines and principles for working with children, their families, and their service-providing organizations. Cohen Konrad emphasizes the relational perspective, which places value on human relationships, particularly those that children establish with primary care givers and helping professionals encountered during times of crisis. With this text students can connect theory to evidence-based
practice and use realistic case studies for classroom role-play and engaging discussion. Cohen Konrad's goal is to help students connect science, theory, and the human qualities necessary to effect positive change and inspire hope in the lives of children and families.
Shelley Cohen Konrad (PhD, Simmons College; LCSW) is associate professor of social work at the University of New England and director of the Center for Excellence in Interprofessional Education. She is a clinical social worker specializing in work with children and families, especially those with chronic health conditions and disabilities. Cohen Konrad's publications focus on the importance of caring and relational practice with children, parents, and oppressed populations and on teaching future health professionals relational communication skills.