The Social Care Institute for Excellence will help to change
people’s lives, health minister Jacqui Smith said this week.
Speaking at Scie’s first national conference in London, sponsored
by Community Care, she said the organisation faced an
exciting challenge to make a difference by capturing the best in
social care practice, raising standards and improving
“I’m sure they will rise to the challenge,” she said. “I look
forward to Scie making a real contribution in years to come by
developing good practice and changing people’s lives.”
Smith said that, although good practice was out there, it was not
always easy to identify where it was.
She described how Scie would have a key role to play in ensuring
future policy was evidence-based, in helping to give more power to
users and carers and in training staff. Scie had a vital role to
“make sure the best in social care practice and knowledge is
identified and passed on”, she added.
Opening the conference, Scie’s chairperson, Jane Campbell, set out
the institute’s remit.
“The challenges for Scie are enormous but so are the prizes,” she
said. “The challenge is one of reaching a diverse workforce and
staying relevant in a changing world.
“The prize is one of a confident workforce who can work with change
and in a genuine equal partnership with knowledgeable, confident
Director of charity Kids Company Camila Batmanghelidjh encouraged
Scie to listen to people and recognise that intuition had a key
part to play. She criticised how commercial language based around
targets and outcomes was being “superimposed” on the care
She told Scie: “My challenge is: dare to go and do the evaluation
where the real care-giving happens. Don’t opt out with charts and
Scie last week published its plans for a partners’ council to
enable service users, carers and other stakeholders to influence
how the institute works.