There are over 30 professional organizations in the field of social work. They range from very large organizations like the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), which has over 150,000 members, to smaller more niche organizations like the National Organization of Forensic Social Work (NOFSW). There are also social work organizations that focus on specific ethnic groups, like the Hispanic or African American communities, or have religious affiliations.
While every social work organization is different, organizations provide their members with a variety of resources that could include: professional development, continuing education, certifications, annual conferences and events, newsletters and journals, social networking, job boards, research, and more. In addition, many social work organizations act as an advocacy group on behalf of their members in order to promote their profession at the local, state and national levels.
We have grouped social work organizations by the following categories:
Unlike the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), state-specific clinical social work organizations are not part of a larger national organization. Each state’s organization is independent from the organizations in other states. Some state organizations are affiliated with the Clinical Social Work Association (CSWA), but they are not a single organization like the NASW.
While each clinical social work organization has a different mission statement, in general, their focus is to represent and advanced the profession of clinical social work. This could include:
Setting standards for professional practice, ethics, and education
Promoting the values and roles of clinical social workers to the public
Protecting the rights of licensed clinical social workers through advocacy at the state level
Providing mentoring and continuing education opportunities to its members
In addition, many state clinical social work organizations have conferences or workshops for their members to attend. These are a great opportunity to network and meet other licensed clinical social workers.
For clinical social work professionals who are not already members of their state’s clinical social work organization, we have compiled a list of state specific organizations below. We definitely recommend contacting an organization if you have questions or want more information before potentially becoming a member.
Many of the NASW state chapters have job boards on their website. Some of these are free to the public while others require membership to view listings. View our NASW State Specific Chapters page to find the website of your state’s NASW chapter.