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Importance Of Cultural Competence In Counselling

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Ethnic groups, their present and their future, are determined by factors like history, education, religion and politics. These factors build and shape the cultural identity of people and have a major effect in their way of thinking, lifestyle, behaviour, habits, morals, ideology, preferences, traditions, etc.” For this reason “what constitutes normal behavior is not the same to people of different social, economic, political and cultural backgrounds (Bayne, Jinks, Collard, Horton, 2008).
A variety of applied counsellors and theorists have argued that the first and maybe the biggest challenge for prospective counsellors working in a multicultural society is to identify the dominant values faced by themselves and the society and culture in which
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However not being aware of our own political values and cultural identity can have a detrimental effect on how we engage with, and sustain a therapeutic relationship with clients.
Insofar as therapists and patients have different reference groups, all encounters may be considered cross-cultural. If this perspective is endorsed, then one may indeed consider cultural competence to be essential to overall clinical competence. Therapists should strive for cultural competency by acquiring both generic and specific cultural knowledge and skill sets. Various generic cultural issues may occur at each phase of psychotherapy, and specific cultural knowledge guides their resolution.
Counselors need to be aware that they are able to work with particular issues and certain cultural groups. This is because conscious and unconscious meanings and assumptions, such as strongly held religious or political beliefs, will be communicated to the client. “It is desirable up to a point to know about a particulars clients background and therefore not to ask questions about it” due to the clients may be frustrated and impatient with this use of their time. (Bayne, Jinks, Collard, Horton, 2008). This is where cross-cultural training, supervision and personal development are
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