In 2016, the AASW celebrated seven decades of representing the social work profession, promoting professional education and excellence, and advocating for social justice.
On 7 September 1946 a draft constitution for the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) was adopted by seven interstate delegates in Melbourne. The aim of the new association was to develop professional social work education and practice throughout Australia, and represent the Australian social work profession internationally.
Back then, we had approximately 400 members and were administered by volunteers. Today, our more than 10,000 members are supported by the Board, volunteers and 27 staff in branches in each state and territory.
In a series of articles, honorary life member, Jane Miller AM, has highlighted key aspects of the AASW's journey since its founding in 1946.
Social work literature
Read John Lawrence's book, Professional Social Work in Australia, the Norma Parker addresses delivered by AASW presidents since 1969 and the spoken memories of Victorian branch social workers. Also available via publisher Taylor and Francis is Elspeth Browne's book, Tradition and Change: Hospital Social Work in New South Wales.
Meet our members
Members tell us what drew them to become a social worker and their thoughts about the profession.