Social Worker of the Year Awards finalists announced

81 social workers and social work teams have been announced as finalists for November's awards night

Bianka Lang (middle) receiving her trophy for Overall Social Worker of the Year in 2016. Photo: Matt Grayson

More than 80 social workers and social work teams have been selected as finalists for the prestigious Social Work of the Year Awards.

In total, 81 social workers and teams will compete to win awards in 16 categories in November, and one social worker will be picked as the Overall Social Worker of the Year 2017.

Peter Hay, chair of the Social Work Awards charity which organises the event, said: “Our aim is to celebrate the outstanding achievements of individual practitioners and teams up and down the country and we’ve been truly humbled by the huge praise coming from people who have benefited from great social work.”

James Rook, managing director of the awards’ headline sponsor, Sanctuary Social Care, said this year had seen the highest number of entries ever.

“The standard of entries and level of competition is very strong, so all shortlisted nominees should be extremely proud. We look forward to welcoming our finalists and their guests to the awards ceremony in November to celebrate their outstanding achievements in the profession.”

The full shortlist of finalists:

Mental Health Social Worker of the Year (Sponsored by Hampshire County Council)

  • Andrew Thomas, London Borough of Croydon
  • Babara Cooley, Essex County Council
  • Billy Melvin, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • Gareth Benjamin, Livewell South West

Raising the Profile of Social Work (Sponsored by Bradford Metropolitan District Council)

  • Essex Social Care Academy
  • Louise Walker, Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council
  • Sarah Parsons, Cafcass
  • Seanna Lassetter, Birmingham City Council

Student Social Worker of the Year (Sponsored by Calderdale Council)

  • Chelsea Higgins, University of Hull,
  • Joseph Vanlint, Liverpool John Moores University
  • Louise Watson, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Nabeela Talib, Oxford Brookes University
  • Suzanne Rowe, The Open University
  • Zoe Stanyard, De Montfort University

Practice Educator of the Year (Sponsored by The Open University)

  • Ali Bell, Cornwall Council
  • Amanda Lewis, Birmingham City Council
  • Jim Fox, Shropshire Council
  • Lynn Lock, Achieving for Children
  • Suzannah Rockett, Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council

Creative & Innovative Social Work Practice (Sponsored by OLM Systems)

  • Family Safeguarding Teams Hertfordshire, Hertfordshire County Council
  • Linda Nelmes, Cafcass
  • North Kent Children in Care Team, Kent County Council
  • Virtual Dementia Tour Training Team, Essex County Council

Best Social Work Employer (Sponsored by Sanctuary Social Care)

  • Central Bedfordshire Council
  • East Sussex County Council, Children’s Services Department – Early Help and Social Care Service
  • Essex County Council, Children and Families
  • Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

Team Leader of the Year, Children’s Services (Sponsored by Kent County Council)

  • Clare Luby, Achieving for Children
  • Hannah Foxcroft, Ealing Council
  • Leanne Baines, Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council
  • Marcos Vicinanza, London Borough of Hillingdon
  • Sarah Carter, Essex County Council
  • Sharon Turner, Essex County Council

Team Leader of the Year, Adult Services (Sponsored by Gloucestershire County Council)

  • Elizabeth Thorpe, Calderdale Council
  • Jill Hughes, Worcestershire County Council
  • Melanie Wilson, Livewell South West
  • Nicky Skinner, Devon County Council

Team of the Year, Children’s Services (Sponsored by iMPOWER)

  • Adoption Team, Gloucestershire County Council
  • Coastal and North East Ipswich Child in Care Team, Suffolk County Council
  • No Recourse to Public Funds, London Borough of Waltham Forest
  • Oldham Phoenix Team, Oldham Council
  • Pathway Team, East Riding of Yorkshire Council
  • The Children in Care Specialist Team, Essex County Council

Team of the Year, Adult Services (Sponsored by UNISON)

  • AMHP Team, Northumberland County Council
  • Essex Mental Health Family Group Conferencing Service, Essex Partnership NHS Mental Health Trust
  • Hospital to Home, Derby City Council
  • Langdon Forensic Social Work Team, Devon County Council
  • Sexual Exploitation Hub, Newcastle City Council
  • West Somerset Community ASC Team, Somerset County Council

Newly Qualified Children’s Social Worker of the Year (Sponsored by Tees Valley Local Authority Children’s Services)

  • Becky Taylor, Essex County Council
  • Dean Radford, Sheffield City Council
  • Jack McWaters, Achieving for Children
  • Jayesh Rushi, Lancashire County Council
  • Rosemary Smith, Ealing Council
  • Senita Kaur, Doncaster Children’s Services Trust
  • Susan Hook, Essex County Council

Newly Qualified Adult Social Worker of the Year (Sponsored by BASW)

  • David Evenden, Hampshire County Council
  • Gary Spencer-Humphrey, Hampshire County Council
  • Helen Simpson, Gloucestershire County Council
  • Lisa Holliday, Thurrock Council
  • Nicole Jones, Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust

Children’s Social Worker of the Year (Sponsored by Barnardo’s)

  • Deion Grant, London Borough of Tower Hamlets
  • Donna Kessler, Hertfordshire County Council
  • Hannah Tull, Essex County Council
  • Jackie Dowding, London Borough of Havering
  • Jason Sedgman, Central Bedfordshire Council
  • Mark Davies, Cheshire West and Chester Council
  • Nicola Silk, Rutland County Council
  • Vanessa Alexander, Ealing Council

Adult Social Worker of the Year (Sponsored by Devon County Council)

  • Claire Lillywhite, Hampshire County Council
  • Isabel Andrews, Leicester City Council
  • Michelle Bradford, Gloucestershire County Council
  • Vidhya Biju, Birmingham City Council
  • Vicki Ingham, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Championing Social Work Values (Sponsored by Essex County Council in partnership with Servelec Corelogic)

  • Andew Deller, Lifecraft
  • Carolyne Willow, Article 39
  • Nikki Mahony, Hampshire County Council
  • Rachel Keetley, Norfolk County Council

Lifetime Achievement Award (Sponsored by BASW)

  • Andy Butler, Surrey County Council
  • Duart Peacock, Hampshire County Council
  • Mark Trewin, Bradford Metropolitan District Council
  • Shelagh Butler, Cafcass
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