What is the Social Work Professional Support Service?

BASW has been consulting with social workers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. This has given us rich insight into the challenges that our members are experiencing and the current concerns they have. The new Social Work Professional Support Service (SWPSS) is a short-term, peer-to-peer listening service in which trained volunteer coaches are able to support colleagues across the profession during COVID and beyond. Designed to support wellbeing and address practice concerns, this peer-to-peer service will offer a space for:

How does the Social Work Professional Support Service work?

Social Workers can apply to become a volunteer coach for the Social Work Professional Support Service (SWPSS) and will receive full induction and training upon acceptance. Volunteer coaches can develop their skills, gain CPD points, undertake formal supervision and use a reflective record for portfolios.

The PSS can be accessed by registering to book a slot with a trained volunteer coach. During sessions, participants will be encouraged to debrief, reflect, problem solve and think about what they may need to support them in their practice through COVID and beyond.

For more information and instructions on how to get the most out of the Social Work Professional Support Service, please visit the FAQ page.

Who is Strengthening Practice?

Strengthening Practice (formerly named Child Centred Practice) has been helping develop skilled and vibrant professionals since 2007, working with local authorities and service providers throughout the UK. We provide helpful practice frameworks for social and healthcare workers who serve children, young people, adults, older people and their families. We support continuing professional development within the workplace through seminars, workshops, coaching, and action learning sets, focused on core skills, developing policy and procedures, and capturing information about what matters most for children and families. In 2018 we were awarded accreditation by BASW as a training organisation. For more information about us, our team and our experience, please visit www.strengtheningpractice.co.uk.

Coaching has been a mainstay of our Strengthening Managers and Strengthening Relational Practice programmes for many years, in which we have carried out telephone, email, on-line, face to face and group coaching sessions. These have ranged from 1-1 sessions, to small pods (e.g. action learning sets of up to 6) through to even larger groups of 12. In addition, and in direct response to the COVID 19 impacts, we are delivering an online coaching support service to Local Authorities to support their staff in managing the impact of COVID 19 on their practice.

Our training team are all registered social workers.

Our values and principles

We formed Strengthening Practice driven by the same goal that keeps social workers and health professionals coming to work every single day: the overwhelming wish to make a positive difference to people’s lives. Together, we can bring about lasting and measurable improvements to the lives of children, young people and families.

Everything we do is informed by emotional wisdom. We help practitioners feel safe to share knowledge and experience. Fundamentally, we believe that everyone is trying to do a good job. We’ll reinforce your self-esteem to help you handle challenges – and our trainers and coaches will mediate to help address individual issues while fostering mutual trust and respect across all levels of your organisation.​​​​​​​