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Tue 16 Mar

World Social Work Day 2021

12.30 - 2.00pm


Ubuntu: I am because we are: Strengthening Social Solidarity and Global Connectedness.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine

To view the video of this event, go to 

World Social Work Day is on the 16th March 2021. It is the key day in the year that social workers worldwide stand together to advance our common message globally. This year, the 2021 World Social Day highlights Úbuntu: I am Because We Are. This is the first theme of the 2020 to 2030 Global Agenda for Social Work and Social Development.

Ubuntu: I am Because We are – Strengthening Social Solidarity and Global Connectedness. Ubuntu: ‘I am because we are’ is a concept and philosophy that resonates with the social work perspective of the interconnectedness of all peoples and their environments. It speaks to the need for global solidarity and also highlights indigenous knowledge and wisdom. Silvana Martinez, IFSW President commented:

The theme comes from extensive consultation within IFSW and beyond. At a time when global politics has retreated into nationalism, Ubuntu is a powerful message on the need for solidarity at all levels: within communities, societies and globally. It is a message that all people are interconnected and that our future is dependent on recognizing all peoples involvement in co-building a sustainable, fair and socially just future. IFSW invites all social workers, partner organizations and people who care about the future to co-brand the poster. Together we can change world for this and future generations.



12.30pm Welcome & Introduction

12.35pm Colletta Dalikeni Ubuntu: Collective Responsibility in Dismantling Racism

12.55: Q&A for Colletta

1:00: Brian Davis Social Solidarity and Global Interconnectedness in Social Work at the National Reception Centre for International Protection 

1:20: Q&A for Brian

1:25: Fiachra O’Suilleabhain Sustainability, Solidarity and Social Justice in Social Work: Educational Endeavours

1.45: Q&A for Fiachra

1:50 Panel Discussion and Concluding Remarks

2:00 Close



About the Speakers

Brian Davis is a HSE Social Inclusion Social Work Team Leader who has been working with the HSE Health Screening Team at Balseskin Reception Centre in Finglas for the last 5 years. Balseskin is the National Reception Centre for newly arrived international protection applicants and where most applicants arrive before moving to longer term direct provision centres around the country.

Dr. Colletta Dalikeni is a CORU Registered African- Irish social worker, educator, and researcher, currently based at Dundalk Institute of Technology. She is Board member of the Irish Association of Social Workers, Editorial committee member, reviewer for reputable international journals as well as an active member of the IASW Anti-Racism Advisory group. Colletta’ s local and international social work academic and practice experience encompass various areas that include but are not limited to chid protection/welfare, medical social work and intellectual disability.  Her research and teaching interests have a bias towards culturally competent social work practice with various ethnic minority categories such as immigrants, asylum seeker and refugees.  Her particular focus is on how the intersecting discourse of race, racism, culture, come to bear on their human rights in the context of social citizenship entitlements. Colletta’s emancipatory activist research and scholarship is evidenced through her ongoing active involvement in several community social inclusion and diversity projects. Some of her current work in relation to social work is focussed on creating safe spaces and conducive conditions for addressing race-based issues in both social work practice and education through asking difficult questions about Racism. Her other current preoccupations involve leading collaborative Erasmus Plus funded EU projects that are also aimed at challenging Racism and other injustices to promote successful social inclusion and integration at national and EU levels.

Fiachra O Suilleabhain is a College Lecturer in Social Work and Social Policy in University College Cork. His research interests focus on genders, sexualities, sexual- and gender-base violence, teaching for the professions and ecological justice. Along with colleagues, Mary Hurley, Catherine Forde and Angela Flynn, he has developed an inter-disciplinary module about sustainability and ecological justice for social work, youth work, community development and nursing students.