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Social work managers build their capacities ahead of piloting new social services in Turkmenistan


Ashgabat, February 1, 2021. Over 100 mid-level social work managers from public and non-governmental social service providers from all the regions of Turkmenistan have enhanced their knowledge in social work provision and managerial capacities in the course of a five-day intensive online training. The training was organized by the United Nations Development Programme jointly with the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Population of Turkmenistan within the framework of the UN-Turkmenistan Joint Programme on introduction of quality inclusive community-based social services in the country. This training is one in the series of trainings delivered to Turkmenistan’s social service workforce that aim to strengthen their social service provision capacity in the country ahead of piloting new social services in the pilot regions this year.  

The training was conducted by national experts who had successfully completed the relevant interactive online training-of-trainers provided by the Bulgarian Social Activities and Practice Institute (SAPI). The challenge of the online training to local social work managers was that it implied using electronic versions of training materials and online interactive techniques of training.

Despite the fact that the training was conducted online, the short survey conducted by the end of training demonstrated that it has successfully achieved its learning objectives set by the Joint Programmer’s capacity building component. 73 out of 102 participants took a voluntary online survey, indicating that participants enhanced their knowledge and understanding in 16 topics, including the foundational concept of social work and social services, understanding problems and needs of families with children, elderly people and people with disability and other vulnerable groups, a new model of social services to support vulnerable groups, social service quality standards and principles, elements of developing new social service, monitoring and evaluation in social services.

It should be noted that initially it was planned to train 60 social work managers. However, the online modality of training provided an opportunity for the Joint Programme to go beyond its targeted audience and include more national stakeholders both from governmental and non-governmental organizations that provide social services to vulnerable groups.

The Joint Programme on “Improving the system of social protection through the introduction of inclusive quality community-based social services”, funded by the Joint SDG Fund, is being implemented by the partnering UN agencies, namely, UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA, and UNODC and Government of Turkmenistan. The Joint Programme is aimed at introducing a new model of social services at the community level accompanied by relative legislative reviews and capacity building of national social service workforce. The Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Population of Turkmenistan is a leading national partner. Other key national partners include the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health and Medical Industry, and Ministry of Finance and Economy.

Implementation period: 2020-2022. 

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