Poetry Therapy as a Tool for Strengths-Based Practice

  • Rich Furman
  • Eleanor Pepi Downey
  • Robert L. Jackson
  • Kimberly Bender
Keywords: Poetry therapy, strengths perspective, social work practice


This article explores the congruence between poetry therapy and the strengths perspective of social work. It demonstrates the ways in which poetry therapy is consistent with the strengths perspective and discusses methods for its utilization in direct practice settings. Case examples are provided to help the practitioner learn how to utilize poetry therapy with clients from diverse backgrounds. As a tool in strengths-based practice, poetry and poetry therapy can help empower clients and help to focus practitioners on clients’ capacities and resilencies. This article seeks to expand upon the growing literature of strengths-based social work, addressing how the theory can be applied to clinical practice situations.