Headlines: July 15th, 2009

A new campaign has been launched to persuade qualified social workers to return to the profession. The scheme is being run by the Children’s Workforce Development Council, which is working in partnership with local authorities on the initiative and will allocate funding to those taking part.

The scheme is running first in London and the south-east but there are plans to extend it across the country later this year and in 2010. In March this year the Local Government Association began its own ‘to respect, recruit and retain children’s social workers’ with the aim of attracting 5,000 recently retired staff back into the profession.

The CWDC scheme is open to anyone who has left social work but who is, or can be, registered with the General Social Care Council. Those keen to return will get support including a 20-day intensive training course to bring them up to date with IT skills and Integrated Children’s System as well as covering child protection, safeguarding, integrated working, court skills, legal, communication reflective practice, developing interpersonal skills, government procedures, assessment frameworks and foster care and looked-after children. They will also get help to brush up their CVs and with interview skills and writing job applications.

All training costs will be covered by the Workforce Development Council which will allocate funding directly to the local authority for those taking part in the retraining. It has set up a helpline to provide information and an initial assessment of suitability on 0300 123 1220.

The scheme is part of a three-year workforce reform programme to support high quality social workers. Its specific aims are actively to encourage and provide support to qualified social workers thinking of returning to the profession and harnessing the expertise of mature professionals.
More details are available from http://www.cwdcouncil.org.uk/social-work