The social worker at the Masonic Children’s Home is “the glue that holds everything together.” Alison Izer-Bowman is now that “glue.”
As the social worker, Alison’s duties include producing monthly reports on each child’s goals and progress, meeting with the children and families and supporting the education coordinator, Donna Shaffer.
Alison started her new position in April, upon Paula Haldeman’s promotion to assistant director. Alison has several years of experience in the field, including working at a sexual assault prevention and counseling center and as a therapist for youth and family issues. Her most recent experience is working at Masonic Village’s Adult Daily Living Center.
She said her extensive training will allow her to be an “asset” in helping the children to “navigate toward achieving their authentic potential.”
“It is essential that children be allowed to express themselves and make mistakes so that they can learn how to make better future choices and develop a solid sense of self,” Alison said. “I am passionate about securing a better future on every level.”
Alison has already excelled in her role and taken on plenty of responsibilities in the brief time she’s been with the children’s home. These include meeting with the children, assisting other staff members and updating any documentation required by the PA Department of Human Services.
She said she is learning that “no two days will ever be the same,” but is looking forward to continuing to tackle new challenges and responsibilities. She’s also looking forward to “building rapport with the children and their families in order to build successful relationships.”
The children’s home is extra special to Alison because she’s known about it since she was young. A close neighborhood friend, who was “like a grandfather” to her, was an active Mason and would discuss happenings at Masonic Village with her while growing up.
Alison is originally from York and graduated from York College of Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s degree in political science. She also holds a Master of Social Work from Temple University and is a licensed social worker.
She is excited to be able to apply her education to her new position and sees her new role as an opportunity to keep developing her knowledge.
“I wholly embrace being a lifelong learner, as the more knowledge I acquire, the more I want to know,” Alison said.
She describes herself as someone who is “always interested in an adventure,” and this enables her to thrive in any role she takes on. Aside from learning, she is also passionate about gardening, reading, traveling and the arts.
However, social work is her greatest passion because it “encapsulates” most of her interests and advocates for “self-reflection.”
“Social work practice works toward the world being more equitable,” Alison said. “The promotion of mindfulness in how issues or situations are approached allows me to be more composed in addressing the root cause of a problem.”
Paula said she has no doubt that Alison will succeed as the social worker, not only because of Alison’s past experiences, but also because of her “good heart.” She is confident Alison will be that “glue” that’s so fundamental to the children’s home.