Roger Friedman


This article is a qualitative, personal report from the field, designed to highlight current developments in family-based theory and practice that bring hopefulness to workers and clients. The author, an experienced human services consultant and family therapist, draws from his recent experience in a number of states to identify exemplars of practice in the following areas: integrative theory building, functional family assessment, systems change in regard to inter-agency coordination and foster care, community building in low income neighborhoods, developing humility as helpers, and addressing issues of hope and spirituality with clients and with co-workers. Given the turbulent and hostile political environment for family-based services, this article challenges us to remember that effectiveness in helping others is directly related to our feelings of hopefulness about ourselves and our world.