Deborah Davys, Ellen Tickle
International Journal of Therapy and Rehabilitation, Vol. 15, Iss. 8, 06 Aug 2008, pp 358 - 363
Aims: Social inclusion is important to an individual’s health, quality of life and sense of wellbeing. In today’s society, there is an understanding that it is the social, economic and cultural barriers encountered by people with impairments that cause disability. Health-care professionals are well-placed to identify these barriers and the potential for supporting the development of valued roles for their clients, to engender social inclusion. Methods: This article examines the concepts of social exclusion, social inclusion and their relevance to health, wellbeing and valued social roles. The theory of social role valorization—which was developed initially to support and sustain socially valued roles for those who are, or are at risk of, being devalued within society—is discussed and the criticism of this theory is explored. A framework based on this theory is then presented. This framework incorporates these principles and can be used by health professionals across a range of practice settings as a legitimate starting point from which to support the acquisition of socially valued roles, which are integral to inclusion. Conclusions: Supporting the development and maintenance of valued roles is an intrinsic role for all health-care professionals, and it is hoped that this framework to assist the acquisition of valued social roles may be implemented in therapy and rehabilitation settings. Further exploration of the practical implementation of this framework is suggested.
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