Social workers scoop prize

The Social Worker of the Year Awards 2014 takes place at The Lancaster Hotel, Central London on November 28, 2014.
The Social Worker of the Year Awards 2014 takes place at The Lancaster Hotel, Central London on November 28, 2014.

A social work team from Calderdale Council has been described as “innovative, fantastic and inspiring” as it received national recognition of its support of vulnerable adults and won a top prize at the prestigious Social Worker of the Year Awards.

The Calderdale End of Life Social Work Team was named Team of the Year for Adult Services during the awards ceremony, which took place on Friday, November 28, at the Lancaster London Hotel.

The team was set up in 2012 to coordinate social work led, rather than clinically led, interventions for people in their last year of life. It has achieved above and beyond its key performance indicators, with 92 per cent of service users saying its support improved their quality of life.

Speaking after the awards, team manager Jonathan Monk said: “To win this award is amazing, we’re just so proud. It’s great to be at a fantastic event such as this. Social workers don’t get enough recognition so it’s lovely to be able to come together and celebrate all our hard work.”

James Rook, Managing Director of the awards’ headline sponsor Sanctuary Social Care, said: “At the heart of this team’s success is their person-centred approach. They champion the wishes of service users and their families and are very well deserved winners of this award. They can be incredibly proud of the difference they are making to so many people who are in the final stages of their life.”

The judges commended the team’s ability to work in partnership with clinicians and other health and social care professionals. They also described its entry as “fabulous”, saying: “You rarely see a team like this – extremely innovative, fantastic and inspiring, with real values that came across in abundance.”

The team was presented with its award by Ruth Smith, editor of Community Care in front of an audience of almost 350 social workers and representatives of the profession. The evening was opened by the Rt. Hon Nicky Morgan MP, Secretary of State for Education, and also included an exclusive video testimonial from Norman Lamb MP, Minister of State for Care and Support, and an address from Isabelle Trowler, the Chief Social Worker for Children and Families.

The Social Worker of the Year Awards were founded in 2006 by independent practitioner, Beverley Williams, with the aim of improving the understanding and reputation of the profession. This year the awards have been supported by headline sponsors Sanctuary Social Care; Corporate Partners, The College of Social Work and the British Association of Social Workers; and category sponsors Christies Care, NSPCC, Core Assets and iMPOWER.