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Social worker

Social worker

Social workers aim to improve people’s lives by helping with social and interpersonal difficulties, promoting human rights and wellbeing and protecting adults with support needs from harm.

Working with older people, people with learning or physical disabilities or people with mental health problems, you’ll focus on promoting independence, wellbeing and helping people have control over their lives, including maintaining their relationships with family and friends and to be in employment. You may also support adults who have substance abuse problems, have offended, are living with HIV or Aids, or are involved with the criminal justice system.

What is unique about this role?

Social workers work with a number of people at any one time. This is often referred to as a caseload. Day-to-day work involves assessing people’s needs, strengths and wishes, working with individuals and families directly to help them make changes and solve problems, organising support, making recommendations or referrals to other services and agencies, and keeping detailed records.

Social workers also support people to return home from hospital working alongside NHS staff or may help someone through a mental health crisis by helping the person address relationship issues and working with them to solve a financial or housing problem that is causing distress.

Social workers recognise the bigger picture affecting people’s lives and work for a more equal and just society where human rights are respected and protected.

Career pathway

During your first year in work your employer may offer you professional development, for example the Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (AYSE).

We have a wide range of training and development opportunities available including ILM management and leadership programmes and other post qualifying courses through the South West London Teaching Partnership.

With experience, you’ll find opportunities to move into management, research or continue your studies at post graduate level. You could also become a practice educator and train and mentor students from Kingston University