Free Resource Packs on Self Harm, Forced Marriage, Trafficking & FGM

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Self-harm Awareness Resource Pack” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]Virtual College have completed these free resource packs on self harm in young people, forced marriage & FGM. Download copies for free now.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]To help parents & practitioners to understand the scale of self-harm and raise awareness of the issue, we have created a free resource pack.

The Resource Pack includes:

  • A poster
  • An infographic
  • An email footer
  • Images to share on social media
  • A website banner

[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Download Self-harm Awareness Resource Pack” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#666666″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”|||rel:nofollow”][vc_custom_heading text=”Human Trafficking Resource Pack” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]An estimated 36 million people are being used, bought, sold or transported for exploitation worldwide, yet awareness of the issue remains low. Download this resource pack by filling out the form below to help raise awareness across your organisation.

This resource pack contains:

  • A poster for your staff
  • A flowchart of actions to take should you suspect trafficking
  • Modern Slavery Act 2015 legislation

[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Download Human Trafficking Resource Pack” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#666666″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_custom_heading text=”Recognising and Preventing FGM Resource Pack” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]A recent study revealed that 137,000 women in England and Wales are estimated to be living with the consequences of FGM. We worked with the Home Office to combat this by creating a resource pack which aims to increase awareness of the issue.

To help you raise awareness of FGM, this pack includes:

  • A poster for your staff
  • An email to send to your colleagues
  • A banner to put in your email signature

[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Download Recognising and Preventing FGM Resource Pack” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#666666″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_custom_heading text=”Awareness of Forced Marriage Resource Pack” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]Help in the fight against forced marriage by downloading this resource pack and raise awareness across your organisation.

This free resource pack contains:

  • A poster for your staff
  • A footer for your email
  • A facts and figures infographic
  • A guide to Forced Marriage legislation

[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Download Awareness of Forced Marriage Resource Pack” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#666666″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_column_text]Virtual College also run a number of free online courses. Follow the link below for further information.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Free Online Courses” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#666666″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#666666″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

NQSW explores relationships as the heart of social work

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”The past” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text]

Throughout my social work education, it was drummed into me the need to be a radical social worker. Fight for social justice they said, stand up to the establishment they said, this was the ONLY social worker to be. Now whilst I don’t mind challenging when necessary, here I was, a fresh faced, unqualified newbie who was now questioning how I was going to hold down a job, look after my family, attend rally’s and protests and generally cause a bit of trouble. Noooooo that couldn’t be right surely? I mean, I had sacrificed my entire social life, my sanity AND the pub to fulfil my career goals, surely there was a better way? .

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”4676″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”The present” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

They say social work is a calling and I believe it is.  I have heard stories about social workers lying to people about their jobs, but not me.  Wear my badge with pride I do.  I can honestly say I love my job, I really do.  I had found that work life balance that most people fantasised about.  You see social work values really do fit in line with my own.  However, eighteen months qualified and I was beginning to feel unsatisfied.  I knew I was struggling to deal with a profession that was becoming besieged by targets and timescales.  It has been feeling like social work was being defined by everyone except social workers and we were losing our voice.

Then I was given information about an event looking at social pedagogy in Europe.  Having completed a module on it in university I was intrigued to find out more………and besides, who can refuse a free day out in Preston?

On the day of the event I spoke to many people from many countries, all talking about this value-based approach of relational working.  This was it, this was the “radical” social work I had been looking for.  A holistic way of working to support well-being, learning and growth. Putting relationships at the heart of social work!  Before I knew it, I had signed up to the MA in Social Pedagogy Leadership, and that “free” day out in Preston would result in more student debt!

[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”4646″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center” onclick=”custom_link” link=””][vc_single_image image=”4665″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center” onclick=”custom_link” link=””][vc_custom_heading text=”You’re studying what?” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

One of the first things I was introduced to was the term ‘Haltung’.  Roughly translated as ethos, mindset or attitude.  I was taught how Haltung guides our actions by what we believe in, and is characterised by core conditions of congruence, empathic understanding, and unconditional positive regard.  It was now that I realised why I had been struggling.  Yes, I love my job, but at a time when social work and austerity go hand in hand, I was finding it increasingly difficult to build relationships with the children and families I work alongside, and I was realising why that was.  Relationships are important to me both personal and professional – and these are naturally linked.  It was obvious there was a “tug of loyalty” between my Haltung and the needs of my organisation.

[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”The three ‘P’s'” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

I was always told not to share any personal information when working with families.  I found this difficult as I felt like I was doing “to” families rather than doing “with”.  There I was with my laptop and ID badge oozing power, expecting families to divulge their deepest darkest secrets without sharing anything of myself.  I mean, as far as I am aware I am human too? I have my own challenges and experiences, and by sharing I could help reduce the imbalance of power and connect on a human level.  The relationship forms the foundation of my work and that could only succeed if I was authentic (3-ps).

Social work values and ethics tell us to be non-judgemental.  We were taught to be aware of our own beliefs and prejudices and how these can affect working relationships, but never to consider what the people we work with bring with them.  Very often we get “stuck” cases that become labelled as “troubled families”.

[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”Herm-a-what?” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

Hermeneutics offered me an understanding of why people don’t come to any given conclusion without some form of pre-understanding, which is influenced by their own views and experiences.  “Understanding is, essentially, a historically effected event” (Gadamer, 2004). Basically, the inappropriately labelled “troubled families” bring with them their own views and experiences, and by realising how their reality is constructed by these experiences, effects how they engage and could make a person feel misunderstood.  Never had the saying “you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink” made more sense – change will not happen if it is imposed.  Essentially, I needed to understand that we can all look at the same thing differently and arrive at different conclusions.

When I initially read a case, I make assumptions about a family, its natural, I am only human.  However, hermeneutics explained how my prejudices can affect my interpretations of that family.  It made me look at people’s behaviour and challenge my own thinking, beliefs and perceptions, and consciously try and not label families.  It is important to me to understand the way of life of a person, therefore, I had to understand their thinking and behaviour.  By utilising empathy and dialogue will only lead me towards a greater commitment from families and develop positive relationships.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_custom_heading text=”The future” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

I am used to the scrunched-up faces and look of confusion when I tell people what I am studying.  I try and explain that social pedagogy is not a method or something we can adopt for a particular situation, it is about how we do what we do.  As professionals I learn and act using my head (knowledge) heart (emotions) and hands (actions) – striving for the balance of all three.

*Gadamer, H, G. (2004) Truth and Method. London: Continuum.

Written by an anonymous NQSW Social Worker.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_separator color=”orange”][vc_custom_heading text=”Related topic:
My Social Work Story Series: NQSW’s journey to Social Work” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:left|color:%23848685″ use_theme_fonts=”yes” link=”||target:%20_blank|”][vc_separator color=”orange”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css=”.vc_custom_1553858897896{background-color: #848685 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Want to know more about social pedagogy?” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ffffff” use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_btn title=”Thempra website has lots of information and resources” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ffffff” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ffffff” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ef7e21″ shape=”round” link=”||target:%20_blank|”][vc_btn title=”Sign up to the FREE Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) to look at social pedagogy across Europe” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ffffff” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ffffff” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ef7e21″ shape=”round” link=”||target:%20_blank|”][vc_btn title=”MA in Social Pedagogy Leadership at University of Central Lancashire” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ffffff” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ffffff” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ef7e21″ shape=”round” link=”||target:%20_blank|”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Add your front-line service to our Social Care Directory for free!

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Add your front-line service to our Social Care Directory today for free” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

We are continuing to expand our social care directory database on a National level and we’re inviting all front-line social care service providers to join us. Whether 3rd sector, charity, voluntary, private or local council services, our social care directory is completely FREE to register and list.

All you need to do is register for a free ‘advertiser’ account via our sign-in/register page. Once your email has been validated, you’ll be able to list any service you offer under the ‘social care directory’ listing package. It takes five minutes and it’s a great cost effective way to help promote the fantastic services you offer.

[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Set up listing” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_custom_heading text=”How it began” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

One Stop Social was created by Matt Hughes when he was managing a local Children’s Team. What he found was that front-line services and social care practitioners needed a better way to help improve referrals and communications, so that the right services could be found to help those in need of them. He understood that time is precious due to work pressures. As such, One Stop Social’s aims isto be a single point of access or ‘one stop shop’ where practitioners can search, find and refer to local social care services.

[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”4646″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center” onclick=”custom_link” img_link_target=”_blank” link=””][vc_btn title=”Set up listing” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_custom_heading text=”Our Philosophy” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

For 3 years, we’ve been supporting the lives of thousands of UK social workers by assisting with interview skills, practice education, CPD sessions, legal training, access to relevant jobs and resources to build good practice. Our Work and Care Together events unite our community for innovative discussions and valuable training, continuing our mission to advocate good practice nationwide.

[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Set up listing” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_background=”#ef7e21″ outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”round” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Special Guardianship Order Reports: Tips and Hints

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Special guardianship assessments are one of the most detailed and extensive assessments to complete within Children’s Social Care Services. An SGO serves to grant parental responsibility to one of more special guardians (usually kinship carers or sometimes foster carers) whilst not severing the bond with birth parents. It was introduced in 2005 as a permanency option and once granted is expected to last until the child/ren reach the age of 18 years.

The amount of information needed to formulate the assessment can be daunting and very time consuming. As such, I have put together some vital information and tips to consider during the assessment process.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Legislation and Guidance” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • The Special Guardianship Regulations 2005
  • The Special Guardianship (Amendment) Regulations 2016
  • Children Act 1989
  • Adoption and Children Act 1989
  • Re B-S judgement
  • Special Guardianship Guidance 2017 (updated from 2005)
  • DfE Impact of the Family Justice Reforms on Front-line Practice Pase Two: Special Guardianship Orders – research report – August 2015
  • DfE The impacts of abuse and neglect on children; and comparison of different placement options – Review – March 2017

Supervision Orders have quite commonly been attached to SGO’s due to remaining doubts about the prospective guardian’s ability to care for the child/ren on a long term basis. However, the government have reported that “it is vitally important for the Local Authority analysis to be robust, supported by strong and independent evaluation” so as to reduce the need for Supervision Order applications.

The report will encompass a detailed assessment and analysis of the child/ren, both birth parents and the applicants. Below is not an exhaustive list, but may help in some aspects to consider:[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Family history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • When interviewing parent’s and prospective special guardians, ensure all family names, dates of birth, places of birth, any deaths and explanations for deaths are gathered and the dynamics of each relationship. This will enable you to consider the support network and any conflict within the family that should be explored further.
  • A short personal history of the parents and special guardians should include occupation, health care difficulties, any risk factor in respect of alcohol use, drug use, criminal activity, mental health or psychological difficulties. In addition, the way in which each special guardian was parented and what have they learned from their own past experiences etc.
  • Analysis of their early life and teenage years to include any involvement with the Local Authority, any welfare or child protection concerns. Include any physical abuse, sexual abuse, how their emotional needs were met and any negligent patterns of parenting.
  • An analysis of the special guardian’s relationships with each birth parent including any risk factors.
  • Consider family conferencing to enable the wider family to provide support for the placement sustainability.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Educational history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Undertake a chronology of educational placements for each special guardian. This needs to include any qualifications gained, changes in schools and why, experiences of bullying or being bullied, special educational needs, school attendance, attainment and exclusions, their values regarding education.
  • Include any college courses and/or university courses and whether these were completed.
  • Previous, current and future career goals and aspirations and how these can be achieved as a special guardian.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Occupational history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • A full chronology of the special guardian’s employment to include explanations for leaving employment (whether sacked and reasons why), periods of time out of work and if they were in the forces (if dishonourably discharged) and possible mental health implications from such employment.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Medical history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Undertake an analysis from the special guardian’s own self reporting in respect of their childhood and adulthood to include any serious illnesses, accidents, injuries or operations (including head trauma).
  • The impact that any medical or health care problem has had upon their ability to parent or quality of life.
  • Medical records should be made available and should be considered. The medical records can also be cross-referenced with other aspects of the assessment. For example, drugs, alcohol misuse and mental health.
  • Special guardian’s overall physical health and age should be taken into account, including any illnesses that are degenerative, any patterns of health problems in the family, hereditary illnesses, smoking, diet and exercise.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Psychiatric/psychological history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Consider whether mental health services were involved when the prospective special guardians – whether as children or as adults.
  • The Recent Life Events questionnaire and the Adult Wellbeing Scale are useful tools to use.
  • Consider whether the special guardian has attempted to take their own life, self-harmed or had suicidal ideation. Detail here when each event happened and in what context etc.
  • Consider any medications taken and the reasons for such medication.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Drug and alcohol history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Create a chronology in respect of the use of alcohol and drug use to include all substances. For example, cannabis, heroin, cocaine, glue, gas, amphetamines and psycho-active substances. Detail here when any problematic use started and the context etc.
  • The Alcohol Use Questionnaire should be undertaken.
  • The medical records should be cross-referenced in respect of drug and alcohol use.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Criminal history” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Complete a detailed analysis of the applicant’s forensic history to include all involvement with the police and courts.
  • Discuss all relevant convictions with the applicant and set out their response within the body of the assessment report. Cross reference with their respective criminal records.
  • Identify any patterns of behaviour and any risks regarding illegal activity upon the child/ren.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”History of relationships and children from those relationships” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Complete a detailed account or chronology of each special guardian’s relationship history, the children from the relationships (on-going contact etc.) their involvement with those children and any concerns about those children.
  • This section should include any relationship issues, such as domestic violence, reasons for relationship breakdowns, child deaths etc.
  • Interview previous partners and their experiences of the prospective special guardians.
  • Stability of current relationship, any periods of separation, how disagreements are solved, how each applicant views the others characteristics etc.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”The relationship between applicants and child/ren” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Include how long they have known the child/ren, and in what context, how much involvement they have had, their understanding of the needs of the child.
  • Their on-going understanding of the longer term needs of the child up until 18 years of age and any difficulties they may face regarding the child/ren’s past experiences.
  • Their understanding of any current or future risks posed by birth parents.
  • The strength of the previous and current relationship between the child/ren and the applicants.
  • Include a ‘day in the life of’ to explore an average day (if children are currently placed with them) in the children’s lives.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_custom_heading text=”How the applicants relate to children and adults” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • To include observations between applicants and child/ren.
  • Observations of applicants during interview process.
  • Discussions with family members and references.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_custom_heading text=”Wider family and networks of support” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • This aspect should include an analysis of their practical, emotional, financial and professional support networks, their attitude to help and support and their ability to engage and co-operate.
  • Familial and friends references should be obtained.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Housing and home conditions” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • A detailed analysis of the home conditions should take place, details of each room should be observed, look out for any aspects that could present a risk to the child/ren. The Home Conditions questionnaire is a useful tool.
  • Consider whether the family is vulnerable to eviction, debt, privately owned, rented etc.
  • The outside area of the home should be seen, both front and back and any safety aspects discussed.
  • The children’s bedrooms and bedding should be seen.
  • Any pets and any risks attached – meet the pet.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Income” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Complete a detailed analysis of the applicant’s income and expenditure. This should be supported with bank statements or other documentation and should also set out what disposable income is spent upon. Any loans, CCJ’s, debt should be taken into account.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Parenting capacity” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • The domains of parenting capacity should be considered through the observation of contact, discussion during interview, information obtained from other professionals, references and questionnaires and scales completed.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Basic care / emotional and behavioural development / education” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • Analysis should take place on the applicant’s ability to meet the health, education, emotional and behavioural developmental needs of each child, provide emotional, financial and home life stability.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Safety ” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • The applicant’s ability to safeguard the child from parental risks, their understanding of what the risks are and how they will manage these.
  • To include other potential risks, e.g internet use, social media, stranger danger and how risks may increase as the child enters adolescence including CSE, drug and alcohol use, mental health etc.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Identity and attachment” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • This should include an understanding of the child’s identity within the family, the child’s attachment to the parents, the parents’ attachment to the child, the sibling attachments, religious persuasion and sexual orientation and how these will be managed and supported.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_custom_heading text=”Stimulation” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • How the applicants will provide a stimulating environment, extra activities, family time etc.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_custom_heading text=”Guidance, boundaries and routines” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • What is the applicants understanding of these aspects of care, what their values are regarding boundaries, routines, (cross reference in ‘day in the life of’), expectations, behaviour management etc.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Social presentation and self-care skills” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:left|color:%23ef7e21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]

  • This should consider the children’s social presentation and self-care skills but should also include the applicant’s ability to meet these needs. Their own social presentation and self-care skills to include; how they manage their health, household, emotional well-being etc. and how they have presented during the course of the assessment and any deficits within self-care skills should be raised.

Finally, just remember not to become overwhelmed with the amount of information needed. Organise yourself to discuss specific sections in each interview session so as to break the process down.

You can also set ‘homework’ to enable the gathering process to become easier. For example, request family trees to be completed by each applicant before your next meeting, a chronology of employment, education and income. In addition, for the applicants to involve themselves in research regarding the impact of specific abuse and neglect the child/ren may have experienced. Above all, always keep the child’s needs, safety and welfare at the centre of the assessment.

DOWNLOAD THIS DOCUMENT FOR FREE[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Author Bio

The Author of this blog is an experienced Social Worker, Practice Educator and Independent Social Work Consultant who enjoys sharing experiences and learning new skills and knowledge. Background includes working in Child Protection, Family Court, Fostering, EDT, Adults with Learning Difficulties and the Youth Justice System.


Social Work Convention Training

The countdown is officially on for the first installment of Work and Care Together in London.

With just a few days days left until we open the doors for our first major social work and care convention at the Park Plaza Riverbank Hotel, it’s an understatement to say we’re excited. We’ve got some fantastic services involved in the exhibition element of the day (including our Sponsors Care Sourcer, Hays Social Care and Elder Live-In Care) and with West Sussex County Council on board as our Main Partners for the whole event, we’ve been able to craft an event with practitioners at the heart.

Attendees will automatically enter our free competition, offering the following prizes:

1) £200
2) 2 OSS Memberships  (for you and a friend)
3) 1 OSS Membership
4) £100 
5) 2 FREE Social Work Books 

At One Stop Social, we pride ourselves on the fact that we’re front-line practitioner run, and so everything we do is driven by ways we can realistically help our social work and care communities. We understand the day-to-day struggles within social work and we use all the resources at our disposal to help where we can. An example of this is the training we’ve organised for Work and Care Together in London. We recognise it’s so important for practitioners to develop their skills and understanding in different areas of social work; therefore, we wanted to make sure we offered a variety of different talks at our convention which our attendees would actually want to see. With a whopping 24 training workshops and presentations taking place throughout the day on 24th January – all completely free to attend – we hope we’ve achieved this.

Below you’ll find the full training schedule for all 5 of our break-out rooms at Work and Care Together and remember, they’re all entirely free! OSS Members can pre-register for their chosen sessions, but aside from that, the rooms will be filled on a first come first served basis. All you’ll need to do is come by the One Stop Social stand and let our team know which presentation you’d like to attend. We’ll close the lists 15 minutes before each workshop so we’d recommend getting to the event a bit early! You’ll need a “General Admission” ticket to access the event as a whole so make sure to book yours! There will be a very limited number of tickets available at the door

Training Room 1
Training Room 2
Training Room 3
Training Room 4
Training Room 5

We hope to see you all there, and just remember, if you have any questions feel free to email us at

One Stop Social Membership – If you’d like first access to One Stop Social organised training, not just at Work and Care Together but across the UK, then sign up for our new membership scheme. For just £6.49/month you’ll get discounts of between 10-30% on a range of social work books, e-books and resources; free e-journals; 90% off bespoke social work insurance packages AND access to our rewards platform!

One Stop Social – Review of The Year 2018

2018 has
been a pivotal year for One Stop Social. We have turned the page from being a
fledgling organization, progressing to grow our core staff by 400%. 2018 has
seen One Stop Social truly become the voice of Social Work and Social Care in
the UK, as our reputation for representing the Social Work profession, as well
as providing excellent resources and training to support practitioners grows.
The following is an overview of our work and development in 2018:

Work & Care Together

In June, we held our first Social Work & Care Convention ‘Work and Care Together’, in Manchester. We had over 500 attendees, who engaged with the different training workshops and we showcased over 25 front-line services. We’re immensely proud of this first success. It went so well that we are doing it all over again, only this time in London! On Thursday 24th January 2019 we’re setting up shop in the Park Plaza Riverbank and bringing our digital hub for social work and care into the vibrant streets of London!

We are unbelievably excited about this and can’t wait for the big day. Hope to see you all there!

OSS Membership

One of our biggest developments from 2018 has got to be One Stop Social’s new membership scheme. In October, we launched our own Social Work & Care Membership, which is growing week by week and we can’t wait to see it grow more in 2019. The Membership is our way of offering support, development and showing our gratitude to social workers across the UK! We offer social workers up to 25% off of social work books, access thousands of e-journals, 90% off social work insurance packages, access to our rewards and discount portal and entry into our monthly lottery draw.

Employer Standards for Social Workers

Hughes (Director) is now involved in reviewing the employer standards for
social workers across England. This is being facilitated by the Local Government
Association (LGA) and features key partners within Social Work, including both
Chief Social Workers, Department for Education, Department for Health and
Social Care, BASW, Unison and the Open university. To have our directors
involved in such work is very exciting, and he will continue championing social
work and good practice throughout the process.

Internship Development Scheme

Our team
has been growing this year with help from our Internship Development Programme
with the University of Salford, which first began in February. From this we
have had 3 Post-Graduates who achieved 2 Merits and 1 Distinction. Our work has
also been boosted by a further cohort of undergraduate students from Salford
University who are all helping us support our sector to the best of our
abilities. Elena, our first intern, is now fully employed with us and her
energy and passion has added something extra to One Stop Social. We are all
very proud of them and we hope to continue this partnership throughout next

Greater Manchester Social Work Academy (GMSWA)

In March,
we began working with the GMSWA as the external communications lead, working on
their marketing and presence, so that more social workers could learn about the
great practice being facilitated. Since then, we’ve designed and developed
their website, and discovered a drive to boosting their brand awareness within
the social work community in Greater Manchester. Working with the teaching
partnership has allowed us to further our passion for improving communications
within the sector, an area which we’ve developed further this year by working
with great organisations like Bedspace and Care Sourcer. In 2019 we hope to
develop these existing partnerships and collaborate with more services as
passionate about social work and care as we are.

Social Work Connect

In June we began working in partnership with Siobhan Maclean and Kirwin Maclean Associates in helping them set up, promote and manage social work connect website. This is a subscription only website provides users with all the functionality of the social work theory app along with lots of additional new material such as ‘lunchtime learning’, ‘theory library’, ‘Critical Reflection & Analysis’, ‘SHARE Tools’ and the ‘Envelope Activity’. This has involved working with a number of services and Local Authorities throughout England and Wales. Find out more about the fantastic website here:

Staffordshire Adult’s Social Care Learning Academy

In October,
we started working with Staffordshire County Council (Adult’s Service) in
setting up, designing and creating their Adult’s Social Care Learning Academy. This
work will continue into the new year, though we’ve already helped with their
practice education service and social work apprenticeships. It’s been great to
be working directly with the team at Staffordshire to put the systems in place
for good practice.

Social Work & Care Training

This year
we’ve been keen to make sure we’re not just a digital company and to stay
connected to front-line practice, and so we’ve worked to run high quality
training for a number of partner organisations. We work closely with Hays
Social Care, to run training events for their locum staff on a variety of
specialist areas within social work and care. We also work with established
training providers to help improve the access to training for social workers
and care professionals across the country. We know skills development is a key
part of good practice, so we want to help facilitate this as much as possible.

Social Work & Care Jobs Board & CV Library

A core part
of One Stop Social has always been to aid the recruitment process within social
work and care. We recognise it’s not easy and want to do our part, which takes
the form of a Jobs Board with up to date listings, that are rolling every 30
days. We try to make sure the job adverts on our site are all current, so that
our community of professionals can make informed decisions for their future.

Practice Educator Service

This year we’ve further developed our consortium of practice
educators in England and Wales. We have some fantastic practitioners as part of
our extended One Stop Social team, who help support good practice and train the
future generations of social workers. In 2019 we will further develop this area
of service delivery.

New Offices in Central Manchester

December, we moved to our new offices based in Central Manchester. Working from
the heart of Manchester has given our team a real drive and is allowing us to
do more to improve our hub.

New Director

2018 has
brought lots of changes to our team, but we remain a front-line practitioner
led service. We have been joined by new Director, Tristan Johnson, who’s a
qualified Social Worker and AMHP. He is also keen to develop the ‘By Social
Workers, for Social Workers’ ethos of One Stop Social.

“I am very
pleased to join One Stop Social and further develop Matt Hughes vision for a
central hub for social workers and care professionals. The whole team works so
hard to support the social work and social care community, so I’m really
pleased to be able to contribute. With our new membership scheme and our Work
and Care Together events, 2018 has been a year of great change and progress for
us. We want to further develop One Stop Social as ‘the voice’ for Social Work
in the UK and I know 2019 has exciting things in store for our sector.”

We are
extremely looking forward to the New Year and can’t wait to grow even more! We hope
you all had a lovely holiday and wish you a very Happy New Year from the whole
One Stop Social Team.

Social Work Assessment Pack | Resource for frontline working

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Below we have created a Social Work Assessment Pack. This excellent resource is for frontline practitioners and consists of our top ten most popular downloaded social work guides, assessments tips and resources.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Special Guardianship Order Reports: Tips and Hints” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Social Work: How To Write A Good Assessment ” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Sibling Attachment Assessment: What You Need To Know” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Effective Social Work Statutory Visits” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”A Practical Guide To Completing Your First Form F Assessment” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Attending Your First Fostering Panel: A Practical Guide” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Social Work Basic Court Skills: What you need to know” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Social Work: Theories to Inform & Intervene & Models of Assessment” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Assessing Children and Families” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_btn title=”Pre-Birth Assessment Tool and Guidance” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_column_text]If you have a resource or best practice guidance, please feel free to contact us.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Contact us” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][vc_column_text]

If you’re looking for work in the social work or care sector, make sure you’ve uploaded your CV to our social work and care CV Library. It’s free. You can save, email and apply to all your favourite roles from across the UK. 

[/vc_column_text][vc_cta h2=”Add your CV for free!” txt_align=”center” color=”orange”]Create ‘Candidate account and upload CV for free[/vc_cta][vc_btn title=”Create a Candidate account and upload CV for free” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Our Work and Care Together Partners for London!

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]As the Christmas break edges closer it could be assumed that we’re all consumed with thoughts of mince pies, eggnog and presents; but in the case of the One Stop Social team, you’d be mistaken. The end of December for us doesn’t mean Christmas (well it does obviously, we’re not totally immune to festivity) but in actual fact, means we’re that one step closer to our first convention in London. On Thursday 24th January 2019 we’re going to be setting up shop at the Park Plaza Riverbank in central London for a day of networking, training and creative thinking. The second installation of our Work and Care Together events (and our first in the capital city) is centred around the theme of “Educate. Collaborate. Innovate.”, highlighting our drive to support our community with the latest ideas within social work and care.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”3689″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]What’s making us even more excited in the countdown to this event, besides the insightful (free) CPD training workshops and presentations delivered by experts in their field, are the incredible partners who we’re working with for the exhibition at Work and Care Together. We’re committed to making the networking element of this event as equally engaging as the training sessions – and so with that in mind, we’ve got a great line-up for you. Forget Glastonbury or the World Cup Final: this will be the place to be if you’re as passionate about social work and care as we are.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text]First up, we’ve got out Main Partners: West Sussex County Council. After examining the issues of recruitment and retention within the sector throughout our first Work and Care Together event in Manchester, we’re really excited to be working with West Sussex this time, as they’re showing an active drive to work on these problems with their new #StepThisWay programme. We’re sure they’ll have some great insight in London for our delegates, not just about the employability process, but how we can collectively develop social work processes positively as we move forward. Make sure you stop by their stand on 24th January 2019 and chat to their great team![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”3649″ img_size=”medium”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]We’ve also got a great team of sponsors for our second installation in our Work and Care Together series, as our team are keen to collaborate with different services o create a fun and interesting event for you, our community. Hays Social Care, the internationally recognised recruitment agency, are emphasising the “Educate” angle of the events theme by highlighting the importance of working on your skills throughout your career. They’ll also be delivering a presentation on “Working Effectively in Social Work”, which we’re sure will help guide practitioners through their career development. The “Innovate” aspect is handled by Care Sourcer, a start-up from Edinburgh who are working to revolutionise social care with their new care-matching service. Thanks to our recent investigative research with them on the delayed discharge rates within London, we’ve learnt about their determination to integrate technology within the sector, so you’ll not want to miss hearing from them! Our sponsor Elder embody the “Collaborate” theme for Work and Care Together, as leading care providers of live-in care, they recognise the importance of human connections and how the right partnerships can make a real difference in social care. They have service users at the heart of their work, a value we respect and empathise with. They’ll be hosting a breakfast workshop with complimentary coffee and pastries, which will no doubt be a great kick-off for the event![/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Our other exhibitors are equally exciting and we’re sure will bring some really interesting perspectives to our first London event. There’ll be a great mix of front-line services to shed light on various different aspects of social work and care, so make sure you don’t miss out on your chance to chat with the great teams working to support our social work and care community in the best way. These include:

Richmond and Wandsworth Councils

University of Kent Child Protection Centre 

Skills for Care

Research in Practice

Sugarman Education – Children’s Services Division

Potton Kare Services

Centre for Adult Social Care: Advice, Information & Dispute Resolution (CASCAIDr)

National Careers Service 

Edge Training

West Midlands Children’s Services


Parents Against Child sexual Exploitation (PACE)

Every Child Leaving Care Matters (ECLCM)

Kirwin Maclean Associates 

Hays Social Care 


Care Sourcer 

Creative Sparkworks 

Elder Live-In Care 

[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]This is shaping out to be a really great day for practitioners, if we do say so ourselves, so book your free ticket today! This ticket will let you access the event as a whole, and then you can register your interest for any of the training or sessions you like with a member of the One Stop Social Team on the day![/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Remember though that all OSS Members can pre-register for their chosen workshops, so if you’ve signed up to One Stop Social Membership, you get first dibs! Otherwise, it’s first come first served – so we’d suggest getting there early so that you don’t miss out on your favourite session![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title=”Book Your Free Ticket Here” color=”warning” align=”center” link=”||target:%20_blank|”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_cta h2=”One Stop Social Membership ” txt_align=”center” add_button=”bottom” btn_title=”One Stop Social Membership ” btn_color=”warning” btn_align=”center” btn_link=”||target:%20_blank|”]Do you want first access to our training workshops at Work and Care Together and other One Stop Social events; as well as a whole range of other benefits? Then join One Stops Social Membership for just £6.49/month!

By becoming a member of One Stop Social, you’ll get vastly discounted bespoke social work insurance packages, promo codes for social work books and e-books, and access to popular e-journals. We also recognise you’re more than just your practice, so part of the membership is a rewards platform where you can find special deals that can be cashed in at high-street retailers and restaurants, when booking holidays and even on your regular utilities.

Register for One Stop Social’s Membership and start being rewarded as a practitioner and as a person![/vc_cta][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image=”3678″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

OSS Members October Lottery Winners Announced


It’s been a month since we launch One Stop Social Membership, which means that the first lottery draw has now taken place! Each month, One Stop Social will select 2 members at random for cash prizes:

First prize = £200 

Second prize = £100

Any registered member could win, and there are absolutely no strings attached. If you are chosen as one of the winners, you get money. Simple as that!

October’s draw took place last week and the winners have now been contacted by email. If you’re one of the lucky winners, then why not share it on social media! Make sure to tag One Stop Social to help spread the word to our social work community about the rewards you receive with One Stop Social Membership!

Best of luck for November’s draw! — One Stop Social Team.

[/vc_column_text][vc_cta h2=”Become a member” h4=”Join our social work community!” txt_align=”center” add_button=”bottom” btn_title=”Join today!” btn_color=”warning” btn_size=”lg” btn_align=”center” btn_button_block=”true” btn_link=”||target:%20_blank|rel:nofollow”][/vc_cta][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Progress to Excellence: Career Prospects Case Study

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Career prospects looking good as Tom celebrates Level 5 care qualification” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ef7f21″ use_theme_fonts=”yes” link=”|||”][vc_column_text]

A rewarding career in the care sector where he could make a massive difference to the lives of young people was all that Tom Ratcliffe wanted from a very early age.


That was more than 15 years ago and now Tom is living the dream – working in a vital role as Residential Support Worker at Fairfield Farm College, a specialist college in Wiltshire for students with learning disabilities and difficulties.


And although happy and fulfilled in his role, he’s convinced the decision he made many years ago to devote his working life to young people now has a major impact on his future career path.


Tom, 28, has been working in the care sector since he was 18 and now holds his Level 5 qualification in Health and Social Care Leadership and Management after completing an apprenticeship with Progress to Excellence Ltd.


He explained: “My plan to work in care among young people goes back to when I was about 13. My parents were employed in this sector and I definitely wanted to go down this route too. All I ever wanted was a career in childcare where I was involved in a practical setting among young people with learning difficulties.


“It’s a challenging job here at Fairfield Farm College where we run residential, weekend and day courses. No two days are ever the same, they’re always exciting so there’s no chance of getting bored.”


Tom was encouraged by the college to embark on his Level 5 qualification to build up the necessary skills to manage practice and lead others in adult health and social care provision or in children and young people’s services.


He continued: “I knew the apprenticeship would help me to do my job better. Working in a supported living environment is a job I love so I grasped the opportunity.


“The result is that I now have a greater understanding of my role here and it has enhanced my skills in people management.


“What is really exciting is that the qualification has also made my career prospects really good. I enjoy working here but know that eventually I will need to move on.


“I’ve just picked things up while doing my job so I feel very lucky I now have both the experience and qualifications.”


Studying his level 5 qualification with Progress to Excellence Ltd was perfect for Tom as he could choose to study at a time to suit his work patterns.


He said: “This was extremely important as I work shifts so I could fit my learning schedules around my hours. It was the same for assessment – it all came together really well.”


As for his next steps, Tom is considering a further managerial qualification while working for an organisation and the service users, which he loves.


Progress to Excellence Ltd offers a full suite of health and social care and business related qualifications to support the training needs of health and social care employers. For more information, call 0151 650 6933 or email

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_cta h2=”Interested in training?” txt_align=”center” color=”orange” add_button=”bottom” btn_title=”Training & Courses” btn_color=”warning” btn_align=”center” btn_link=”|||”]If you’re looking for training opportunities and courses in social work or care then check out the listings on our website or get in touch for more information![/vc_cta][/vc_column][/vc_row]