Spotlight – How to Survive in Social Work

Social work by its very nature is challenging and demanding work. But, in the current social, economic and political climate, it can prove extraordinarily difficult to keep your head above water. Written by two highly experienced social work professionals, this important book explores the significance of that context, offers guidance on how to survive despite it and even to aim for thriving within it. There are no easy answers, but there is much we can do to make sure that we are able to fulfil the potential and value of social work as a force for making our society a humane one without sacrificing our own health and well-being.

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Ensuring every older person is treated with dignity as a unique individual

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Neil Thompson’s Lessons for Living – Don’t assume you can’t make a difference

Sometimes the difficulties we face in organizations can seem so deep rooted and so extensive that we can feel there is nothing that can be done about them. A pervasive sense of defeatism and hopelessness can easily set in. This is especially the case where morale is low. The result can be a vicious circle: defeatism contributes to low morale and low morale makes people feel helpless. In reality there is often much that individuals can do – especially when working collectively – to make a positive difference. Organisational cultures – whether positive or negative – are basically sets of habits, and habits can be changed. Start to explore possibilities rather than assume that there aren’t any.

It’s all about people: visit Neil Thompson’s humansolutions website

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Look closer to spot and report signs of exploitation

Across the country, young people are being manipulated, sexually abused, forced to launder money and deal drugs. Exploitation isn’t obvious. But it happens everywhere. And you can stop it.

Get to know the signs of child exploitation and how to report it through our award-winning #LookCloser campaign with the British Transport Police and National County Lines Coordination Centre. Together we can protect children from this abuse.

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A Career in Social Work: Part biography, part overview of social work careers

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Let’s Play Fair: Inclusive playgrounds

Too many disabled children are being denied fun and friendship at their local playgrounds because they are not designed for them.

  • Half of families with disabled children face accessibility problems with their local playground.
  • 1 in 10 parents of disabled children said their child got hurt using inaccessible equipment.

We are calling on the Government to invest in a multi-million pound inclusive playgrounds fund. Inclusive playgrounds are places where all children, can be themselves and form memories that last a lifetime.

Demand the Government gives every child an equal chance to play.

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The Avenue Learning Centre Learning resources from Neil Thompson and colleagues

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Six misunderstood concepts about diversity in the workplace and why they matter

Diversity and inclusion in the workplace is a sensitive topic. People are afraid to get things wrong or to use the wrong word. It doesn’t help that the words involved are confusing.

You have probably encountered these concepts at a mandatory training session, a workplace event, or on Twitter. They often involve decades of complex scholarship being reduced down to a single word, and, as such, they can easily be misrepresented. But for any progress to be made, and for real diversity and inclusion to be achieved, getting to grips with what they actually mean is crucial.

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The Authentic Leader A new approach to leadership in Neil’s important book.

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Spotlight – The Care of Older People Practice Manual

A key text for challenging ageism and promoting dignified practice. Dr Sue Thompson presents invaluable guidance on how to take care of older people in positive empowering ways that avoid common ageist assumptions and practices. This is an essential guide to good practice in eldercare.

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A fresh look at social work theory and methods

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Neil Thompson’s Lesson for Living – Put yourself in their shoes

Many a problem has been caused by someone putting something in writing in a way that led to misunderstanding. What you intended to convey and what is interpreted by the reader can sometimes be very different indeed. For example, what you intended to be friendly advice could be perceived as issuing instructions. These mismatches arise because communication does not take place in a vacuum. When you write something you will be doing so within a context of your own circumstances and your own frameworks of meaning. The person reading what you have written will be doing so within their own context and their own frameworks of meaning, and so there is plenty of scope for misunderstanding. What can be helpful is this: if you are writing a letter or report, imagine you are the intended recipient and have just opened and read it. That is, put yourself in the recipient’s shoes. Are you sure, when you look at it from this perspective, that what you have written will convey what you wanted it to?

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A practical guide to supervision of students & other forms of workplace learning

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Supporting people with everyday technology

Social care staff need to be ready to help people they support and their families to make choices about using technology to stay connected and contribute to their communities, especially while social distancing restrictions are in place.

Using technology is now as much a part of life as any other aspect of life that someone might need support with. This means social care workers and volunteers need to help people understand, choose, and use everyday technology for things like:

  • using the internet to stay up to date on guidance, apply for benefits, housing or jobs; doing online shopping or ordering repeat prescriptions
  • accessing track and trace/booking COVID-19 tests and checking results and booking vaccinations
  • video calls to get support instead of in person
  • navigation apps to check public transport times
  • mobile phones to send photos of ailments securely to their GP
  • making three-way calls when they need support to call someone about house repairs or legal issues
  • apps to track fitness, diet and nutrition, sleep, alcohol use, periods and so much more

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If you’re a social worker come join us in the Social Work Focus Facebook group!

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Invisible disabilities

There are 14 million disabled people in the UK. That’s 1 in 5 of us.

Many impairments and conditions are not immediately obvious. That’s why we are supporting ITV to raise awareness of the negative attitudes and social isolation people with invisible impairments can face.

We are calling on everyone to be a disability ally.

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Effective Teamwork: The importance of working together

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