Social work in your area

Lady with glasses sat in classroom

Join your local social work network

Our social work area forums are held across the country to keep you up to date with local and national social work activity.

The forums play an important role in local collaboration and partnerships.

Information about forthcoming meetings is included in our monthly social work briefing

During the COVID-19 emergency, as per government guidance, planned face to face meetings will not take place until safe to do so again. However, where possible webinars will be arranged to give updates and allow presentations from speakers.  

The Eastern Region Social Work Network met on 23 July. Once again, the meeting was held online and the group covered a number of topics.  

One piece of headline news from the meeting is that the network is to have a new chairperson going forward from the next SWAN meeting and I would like to welcome Mark Dimes from Suffolk County Council to the role. Mark is a well established member of the network and I think we all look forward to working with him in this new role.  

I’d also like to extend our thanks to Hannah Smith from Norfolk County Council who has chaired the network so effectively over the last 18 months and during the current pandemic. Welcome Mark and thanks Hannah for all of your hard work!  

In addition to the chairperson discussion, the group discussed planning for student placements which remains a key topic at this time. Leads from the local authorities and HEIs present gave updates about the collaborative work they are doing with their partners to support the continuation of placements and arranging of future placements. 

The group had a discussion about a range of tools which could be used to integrate research into practice. 

Ioana Roberts from Social Work England gave her regular update to the group with a focus on CPD requirements and Lee Mummery gave an update from Skills for Care. 

During the meeting is was agreed that we will now return to meeting as a network every three months. While the pandemic continues, we’ll continue to meet virtually.

The next Eastern Region Social Work Area Network meeting will be held in October with a date to be confirmed very soon and a formal invitation to follow.

If you would like further information about the meetings or would like to become involved, please contact Lee.Mummery@skillsforcare.org.uk

Our social work coordinator for London is Ali Rusbridge and for the South East area is Rachel Reid.

For more information about any of the London and South East forums please email londonsocialwork@skillsforcare.org.uk. 

To attend the ASYE best practice forum or the Pan London social work education network (SWEN) you need to be on the forum mailing list. To request to be added to this list please email londonsocialwork@skillsforcare.org.uk giving your name, organisation and role.

Key resources:

  • Practice learning documentation - These documents for the 2020-21 academic year have been developed by a group of universities in London and South East England.

Joint forums

The ASYE best practice forum

The ASYE best practice forum meets 10.00-13.00 at the Skills for Care London office followed by a networking bring your own lunch. At 13.30-15.00 there is a session for child and family leads.

Dates for forums in 2020:

  • The next forum via webinar will be on 30 September at 10:30. Booking details have been sent. If you haven’t received them and want to be added to the list, please email us

London forums

Our London forums are is divided into five local areas which hold regular social work education meetings. The forums provide an opportunity for you to work collaboratively with Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to support your strategic planning.

  1. North West London social work partnership
  2. North Central London ASYE, CPD and PE social work group
  3. North East London social work partnership
  4. South East London Social Work Reform Partnership
  5. South West London and Surrey Social Work Alliance

Pan London social work education network (SWEN)

The SWEN usually meets 10.00-13.30 at the Skills for Care London office. This is followed by an optional afternoon session from 13.45-15.15. You can bring lunch to the meeting.

Forthcoming meetings:

  • dates for future SWENs will be agreed once things have returned to normal.

South East forums

Our South East forums are is divided into four local areas which hold regular social work education meetings.

The forums provide an opportunity for you to work collaboratively with Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to support your strategic planning.

  1. Southampton, Hampshire, Isle of Wight and Portsmouth (SHIP) social work education group 
  2. Sussex and Surrey social work education group
  3. Milton Keynes, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Berkshire social work education group.

 

We have two social work education networks in the Midlands. For more information please email lucy.mcdonald@skillsforcare.org.uk who is our social work coordinator for this area.

1. East Midlands social work network

Forthcoming meetings:

  • Wednesday 14 October 2020 - details to be confirmed

If you have any questions, please email lucy.mcdonald@skillsforcare.org.uk 

Please send any agenda items to Ian Mathews, chair of the network.

Presentation from the joint East and West Midlands social work event

If you are interested in downloading the presentation that was given at the joint social work event that was held in July 2018, you can do so via this link.

2. West Midlands social work development group  

Forthcoming meetings: 

  • the date of the next meeting is to be confirmed.

Presentation from the joint East and West Midlands social work event

If you are interested in downloading the presentation that was given at the joint social work event that was held in July 2018, you can do so via this link.

Key resources

We have two social work education networks in the North East, Yorkshire and Humber. Both networks address topics such as, post qualifying training for social workers, social work qualifying education, the PCF, the ASYE, principal social worker developments, practice education and continuing professional development.

We also use the meetings to contribute to consultations and address the concerns of local stakeholders.

The networks are attended by a range of social work professionals across child and family and adults social work.

Our social work coordinator for this area is Peter Northrop. For more information please email Peter.Northrop@skillsforcare.org.uk

1. North East Social Work Network

The North East Social Work Network meets 13.00-15.30. Listed below are the dates for each meeting. The next meeting will be held online.

  • Monday 21 September 2020 
  • Tuesday 1 December 2020 
  • Tuesday 2 March 2021

2. Yorkshire and Humber Social Work Network

These meetings are held 10.00–12.30. The next meeting will be held online.

  • Wednesday 21 October 2020
  • Wednesday 6 January 2021
  • Wednesday 3 March 2021

For more information about this network or any of the meetings please contact Peter.Northrop@skillsforcare.org.uk.

Our social work coordinator for this area is Jeremy Ashdown, Locality Manager Jeremy.Ashdown@skillsforcare.org.uk

North West social work forum

The dates for the North West Social Work Partnerships meetings are as follows:

  • The next social work forum will be held via Microsoft Teams on Wednesday 21 October, 14:00-15:30. If you’d like to attend, please save the date and email Jez using the email address below. Jez will then send you further details about the forum.

Jez would like to hear from anyone who would like to support him in planning the content and agenda(s). The commitment would be limited with contact via telephone and email. Jez would welcome any suggestions for content of the meetings so that we can start to identify themes, speakers and content which reflect issues which are important to members of the North West network. If you are interested, please email jeremy.ashdown@skillsforcare.org.uk

Dates of future network meetings are to be confirmed.

Following on from a meeting on 25 September 2019, a second meeting was held on 29 January for employers to consider the apprenticeship route to the social work degree. If you’re an employer and couldn’t attend the meeting but would like to see the notes, please contact Lindsey Thomas Lindsey.Thomas@skillsforcare.org.uk

Our social work coordinator for the South West area is Lindsey Thomas Lindsey.thomas@skillsforcare.org.uk