Social Work Awards 2013 open for entries

The awards recognise the excellent work that takes place in the profession and celebrate the outstanding achievements of social workers across England.

Estelle Thain, pictured left, wins Social Worker of the Year 2012

The 2013 Social Worker of the Year Awards are now open for entries, with the profession’s leading figures joining the panel of judges and a new venue announced for this year’s event.

Annie Hudson, the children’s services director who allowed cameras into her department for the BBC’s Protecting Our Children documentary series and chief executive designate of The College of Social Work, will be among the judges.

Other judges include Professor Eileen Munro and new chief social Worker for children, Isabelle Trowler. Last year’s Social Worker of the Year, Estelle Thain, will also join the judges.

Social workers throughout England are being encouraged to gain recognition for their achievements in 13 different categories in children’s and adult services. There are individual and team awards as well as categories for newly qualified social workers, practice teachers and the best social work employers. 

The 2013 awards, which are organised by a registered charity, will take place on Friday 29 November at The Lancaster Hotel in London.

Guests will have the opportunity to debate the future of the profession with the judging panel ahead of a drinks reception, three course dinner and the presentation of awards.

James Rook, managing director of headline sponsors Sanctuary Social Care, said: “There were a record number of entries in 2012 but we are aiming to make this year’s celebrations bigger than ever, with a fabulous venue for the presentation of the awards, which we are already looking forward to. We hope that as many social workers and social work teams as possible will take the time to enter.”

Ruth Smith, editor of Community Care, said: “The awards are a great way for social workers to gain recognition for the fantastic work they do each day and I’d encourage as many people to enter as possible.”

In 2012 at the Palace of Westminster, Estelle Thain, a social worker at Peterborough City Council, was named ‘Overall Social Worker of the Year’ after winning the Children’s Social Worker Award.

Additional category winners included Ben Ross from Integrated Mental Health Team, HMP Nottingham (Adult Social Worker of the Year), Dorset County Council (Team of the Year – children’s services) and the multi-award winning London Borough of Islington (Employer of the Year, Leader of Innovative Practice (Kim Lawson), Team Leader of the Year – Children’s Services (Norma Barnes)).

Entry forms for each category can be downloaded from the Social Worker of the Year Awards website.

The closing date for entries is 5pm on Friday 6 September, and the winners will be announced on the 29 November 2013.

The Social Worker of the Year Awards was founded by independent social worker Beverley Williams in 2006 to give greater recognition for the achievements of qualified social workers. Now organised by a charity (of which Beverley maintains an active role) the Social Worker of the Year Awards aim to continue championing the role of the social worker and highlighting excellent social work practice.

Sponsors of the Social Worker of the Year Awards include Sanctuary Personnel (Overall Social Worker of the Year) and Christies Care (Adult Social Worker of the Year).

The Social Worker of the Year Awards’ official media partner is Community Care with further announcements of additional sponsors and partners expected soon.

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