Black History Month is celebrated every year in October in the UK. It provides an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the invaluable contributions of Black people to British society.
#SalutingOurSisters is this year's theme and aims to highlight the crucial role that Black women have played in shaping history, inspiring change and building communities. During #BlackHistoryMonth2023 we're dedicating our #GoodNewsFriday feature to sharing the stories of Black women working in social care.
On the 17 October at 12pm, we hosted a webinar on Zoom called ‘Achieving equity in the workplace - Celebrating and supporting our Black sisters in social care’. We talked to three Black women with a social care background, heard about their successes in their careers and the challenges they've faced. Find out more about the webinar.
It's our aim to ensure the social care workforce is treated equally, feels included and valued, and is supported to stay well and pursue their careers in social care. This month we're shining a spotlight on our resources to support equality, diversity and inclusivity in the workplace.
Every Friday throughout Black History Month we're sharing the career stories from Black women working in social care. We'll be hearing about their achievements, who's inspired them along the way and learning about the challenges they've faced.
#SalutingOurSisters: Tricia Pereira, shares her career story this Black History Month
In the first blog in the series, Tricia Pereira, Director of National Workforce Development and Operations at Skills for Care, reflects on her own leadership journey and the Black women who she drew on for support and inspiration throughout her career.
Read Tricia's story
#SalutingOurSisters: Grace Salmon shares her career story this Black History Month
Grace Salmon, retired registered manager, shares the story of her long and varied career in health and social care, both in the UK and North America, and her proudest achievement working in social care.
Read Grace's story
#SalutingOurSisters: Carmen Gardier shares her career story this Black History Month
Carmen Gardier, Head of Service for Mental Health and Learning Disabilities, reflects on how views her position as a "...beacon for change, a medium to serve the community and amplify the voices that often go unheard."
Read Carmen's story
#SalutingOurSisters: Gerry McMurdie shares her career story this Black History Month
Gerry McMurdie, Health and Social Care Advisor at Liaison Group shares the story of her expansive career across health and social care, the inspiration people along the way and her support in the Social Care Workforce Race Equality Standards (SC-WRES).
Read Gerry's story
#SalutingOurSisters: Francesca Darby shares her career story this Black History Month
In the final blog of the series, we hear from Francesca Darby, Head of Service for Learning Disabilities, Worcestershire County Council. Francesca shares what has motivated her throughout her career and her hope, that through her work, she can inspire others not to give up on their dreams or ambitions.
Read Francesca's story
On Tuesday 17 October we spoke to Black women leaders in social care to recognise and celebrate the role of Black women in adult social care, hearing about their experiences, challenges and successes in the workplace.
Our webinar guests included:
Sue Ann Nnamani, registered manager for 20 years in the social care sector. Sue Ann has managed a range of services from care homes with dementia to nursing home with complex needs, and is the current registered manager for a 117 bedded nursing home in Haringey.
Olayinka Thomas, founder of Black Women in Care. Olayinka started her career as a care assistant. She rose to become a registered manager after many years of experience, and is now a social care consultant and a renowned trainer.
- Grace Salmon, retired registered manager. Grace has had a long and varied career in health and social care, both in the UK and in Canada. Beginning her career in nursing and midwifery before moving into the adult social care sector to become a care home manager, finishing her career as registered manager in a nursing and residential home.
If you missed it, here's a recording of the webinar:
We’ve got a range of resources to support you and your teams to achieve equality, diversity and inclusivity in the workplace. From guides to eLearning to learning programmes to forums, our resources support both personal development and organisational development, helping you to identify opportunities to create positive organisational change.
Supporting a diverse workforce: Understanding racism
This introductory overview aims to raise awareness about the history of racism, shows some of the forms that racism takes and provides a model that examines systemic racism. It encourages reflection and discussion around understanding racism and the legal context, providing an opportunity to identify any actions to take forward.
Download 'Supporting a diverse workforce: Understanding racism'
Confident with difference
'Confident with difference' supports you to consider how well diversity is embraced within your organisation and how you could improve. Consisting of four films with supporting questions, leaders and managers can use this resource with their teams to reflect on their own practices and generate discussion points to help facilitate change within their organisation.
Find out more about 'Confident with difference'
‘Creating an inclusive organisation’ eLearning modules
Building confidence to improve equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) across your organisation, our ‘Creating an inclusive organisation’ elearning modules are for anyone working in social care who’d like to learn more about EDI. People from ethnic minority backgrounds often face barriers to career progression and the modules explore what these are.
The modules are primarily aimed at those from ethnic minority backgrounds as they’ve been designed to support learners to deal with specific challenges they may face in the sector, and to help build confidence to improve equality, diversity and inclusion within their organisation. However, the modules may be of interest to anyone, at any level, who is interested in EDI and how to improve this within their organisation.
Learn more about ‘Creating an inclusive organisation eLearning modules
Culturally appropriate care guide
Skills for Care has resources to help anyone involved in the care and support of individuals to have a clearer understanding of culturally appropriate care. The ‘Culturally appropriate care guide’ covers a broad range of topics that will help with learning about people’s cultural identity or heritage.
To support the learning within the guide, there are accompanying resources for use in training and development. These cover supporting individuals from ethnic minority groups and backgrounds, stereotyping, and supporting relationships and people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and others (LGBTQ+).
Find the guide and training resources
Group for Ethnic Minority Social Workers (GEMS) forum
Tuesday 5 December, 10:00-12:00, via Zoom
This forum is for newly qualified social workers (NQSWs) who self-identify as ethnically diverse. During the first meeting the group decided on its name. It’s open to NQSWs from both adults and child and family services. It facilitates discussion of issues which pertain to NQSWs who identify as ethnically diverse and to explore issues around working together, experiences of ASYE programmes and understanding of anti-racist practice issues.
Book your place for this date and future ones
Moving Up programme - registrations open
Our Moving Up programme supports Black and Asian minority groups who are managers or aspiring managers and have the desire and drive to progress in their career but are facing blockages and resistance preventing them from doing so.
Taking part in the programme gives participants an increased understanding of who they are, their strengths and weaknesses and a variety of techniques to help overcome any personal challenges. It will focus on increasing confidence and self-belief, to allow growth and progression to where they want to be in their career.
Find out more and register
Moving Up can be commissioned by trusts, partnerships, organisations, local authorities or other commissioning groups. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to ask for details.
A positive culture toolkit for adult social care
We’re delighted to announce that our new positive culture toolkit is now available to download. Workplace culture is the character and personality of your workplace and what makes your workplace unique, special and individual. Using this toolkit will support you at different stages of your workplace culture journey to establish, maintain and improve your workplace culture so that it’s inclusive, compassionate and collaborative.
It’s for anyone responsible for the culture, management and leadership in adult social care workplaces of all sizes.
Find out more and download
Race Equity Reference Group
The Skills for Care Race Equity Reference Group (RERG) has been established to support Skills for Care’s commitment on championing equity, equality, and diversity. The group is made up of representatives from across the sector and includes people who work in and across social care and people with lived experience. The RERG will support Skills for Care to develop a positive and practical narrative on race equality.
If you’d like to find out more about the RERG please email Equalityandrights@skillsforcare.org.uk
Social Care Workforce Race Equality Standard
The Social Care Workforce Race Equality Standard (SC-WRES) was developed by Skills for Care as a tool to identify issues, create an action plan for change and measure improvements in the workforce with respect to the experiences of people from a Black, Asian and minority ethnic background.
Find out more about the SC-WRES
Supporting a diverse workforce
Our supporting a diverse workforce webpage addresses why equality, diversity and inclusivity is important in the workplace and the positive benefits to both your workforce and those drawing on care support. Everyone has a responsibility to support inclusivity in the workplace and you can find information for leaders and managers, recruitment support and ideas on how to develop your workforce to improve inclusivity.
Visit the supporting a diverse workforce webpage