Posted: Thursday 3rd August 2017
Innovative changes made to Hertfordshire’s child protection service means that social workers in our Family Safeguarding teams are working more effectively. This system overhaul of our child protection services is enabling social workers to meet the needs of vulnerable children and families better. Our social workers feel more supported and are able to focus more on working directly with families.
Sarah Wallis, a social worker in the Family Safeguarding Team said: “To me, ‘Real Social Work’ means working with families to try to help them overcome the difficulties they are currently experiencing so that their children are safe and we can improve the level of safety that they experience in the family home.
“It’s about being in that unique position for children and families where they will share information with you and you can try your best to make a difference to those children who have trusted you with their life experiences. It is why I chose to become a social worker.”
She added “It has been really interesting to see how family safeguarding practice has changed in Hertfordshire, not only in how we communicate with families, but also the support we can offer and the interventions that are in place because of the expertise that we now have in our teams.
“Previously some areas that might have been covered by social workers can now be managed by the adult workers who will feedback that information to us more regularly than if we were an external agency. As a result, I am able to spend more time with children, and families.”
Sarah believes the changes have enabled social workers to become more efficient at intervention and resolution “We can now collectively offer solutions we may not have had access to previously, based on the needs of the family. It is a much quicker process.
“The new intervention structure which is part of the model in Hertfordshire enables social workers to regularly monitor the situation of children and families and understand their needs and issues proactively, so we can reduce the amount of time that children’s’ services are involved and cases don’t drift.”
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