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03/12/2018 - Permalink

Shropshire Integrated Community Services social work team wins top national award

Related topics: Adult Safeguarding / Adult services / Community / Health / Health events / My area / Partner organisations

A social work team from Shropshire has received national recognition after winning a top prize at the prestigious Social Worker of the Year Awards.

The Integrated Community Services (ICS) team, jointly run by Shropshire Council and Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust, were named the winner of the Team of the Year, Adult Services award at the national event which took place last week (Friday 30 November 2018) in London.

ICS provides short-term support for patients who are ready to leave hospital. This involves a team of carers, nurses, occupational therapists and physiotherapists working with the person to help them regain their skills and independence. This will usually be in their own home or as close to home as possible.

ICS teams also work closely with partner organisations to identify people who need support to avoid an admission to hospital in the first place. The team of almost 70 provides a ‘Discharge to Assess’ and ‘Admission Avoidance’ service to two acute hospitals, five community hospitals and in community settings.

Early in 2017 Shropshire Council was set extremely rigorous performance targets by the Department of Health and was required to improve its Delayed Transfer of Care (DTOC)performance by 60% by September 2017. By collectively implementing innovative measures, ICS significantly exceeded its target, by achieving a 75% improvement by September 2017, and a 97% reduction in delayed transfers of care between May 2017 and May 2018.

The judges praised each member of the team for being highly motivated and committed and displaying “compassion and values on a daily basis”.

Social Worker of the Year awards 2018

Left to right: Andy Begley – Shropshire Council’s director of adult social care and housing; Deb Edwards – Team manager ICS acute; Becky Waterworth – Social worker ICS; Anita Gikiri – Social worker ICS; Louise Phillips – Social care practitioner; Tanya Miles – Shropshire Council’s head of adult social care; Lee Chapman – Shropshire Council’s Cabinet Member for adult services, health and social housing; Jane Tait – Team manager ICS community; Bobby Flannagan – independent care home assessor ( SCHT); Sarah Robinson – Clinical Commissioning Group commissioner; Jon Richards, Head of Education and Local Government at award sponsor UNISON.

Speaking just after the team collected their award, Tanya Miles, Shropshire Council’s head of adult social care, said:

“It feels amazing to win this award. We’re an integrated team made up of social workers, nurses and therapists and this award is for everyone back in Shropshire. I have been a social worker for 23 years and I have to say this is the proudest moment of my career.”

Andy Begley, Shropshire Council’s director of adult social care and housing, said:-

“I am so proud and humbled that our ICS team have won this amazing accolade. This award truly recognises a team who have made a considerable and significant difference through their outstanding work, in ensuring people return home from hospital as soon as possible. I would personally like to say congratulations and a huge thank you to our amazing staff.”

ICS social worker Anita Gikiri added:-

“It’s been a fab night to be part of such a wonderful team and most of all to be nominated for the Team of the Year, adult social care and being part of it all; I can’t express how honoured I feel and have enjoyed every moment of it.”

Becky Waterworth, ICS social worker also said:-

“Thank you for giving me the opportunity to celebrate such a special occasion with you all.  I have thoroughly enjoyed myself and have jawache from all the laughing and smiling I’ve done! I’m still in complete shock that we actually brought home gold.  We thought we had done well being listed as a finalist, but we’ve only gone and bagged the top prize!”

Lee Chapman, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for adult services, health and social housing, said:-

“What a fantastic surprise and honour!  We are absolutely delighted to winning this prestigious award.

“Our ICS team have worked extremely hard to support people to be discharged from hospital as soon as they are well, and help people avoid hospital admissions. Amidst an environment of intense scrutiny and expectation, their innovative, enthusiastic and optimistic approach to their work have made them go above and beyond their call of duty. Their dedication and determination has now paid off with the fact that they’ve been nationally recognised for their achievements. This is a real testament to a brilliant team.”

Jan Ditheridge, Chief Executive of Shropcom, said:

“This is a great example of services working in partnership in the best interests of patients and their families. 

“It is critical that patients spend only the right amount of time in hospital and return home as soon as possible to regain their independence. The ICS teams makes sure this happens on a daily basis. 

“We are very proud of the work they do and it is fabulous that it has been recognised nationally.”

Jon Richards, Head of Education and Local Government at award sponsor UNISON, said:

“I was thrilled to present the ICS team with the Gold award for Team of the Year, Adult Services. It is clear that every member of the team is dedicated to improving the lives of the vulnerable people they support and they should be extremely proud of their achievements.”

The team were presented with their award by care leaver and BBC news reporter, Ashley John-Baptiste, in front of an audience of over 450 social workers and representatives of the profession. The Social Worker of the Year Awards were founded in 2006 by independent practitioner, Beverley Williams MBE, with the aim of improving the understanding and reputation of the profession.

This year the awards received a record-breaking number of nominations and 93 social workers and social work teams in both children’s and adult services were selected as finalists across 16 different categories. 

For more information about the awards visit http://www.socialworkawards.com/ 

To find out more about ICS visit https://www.shropscommunityhealth.nhs.uk/ics

Further information

The Social Worker of the Year Awards are supported by Headline Sponsor Sanctuary Social Care; Corporate Partner the British Association of Social Workers (BASW), media partner The Guardian Jobs, and individual category supporters, Barnardo’s, UNISON, Servelec, Children’s Social Work Matters and the London Borough of Lambeth. The awards are also supported by the local authorities of North Lincolnshire, Bradford, Devon, Kent, Sunderland, Hampshire and Essex, as well as the Tees Valley Local Authority Child and Adult Services.

The Social Work Awards Ltd is a charitable organisation seeking to improve the awareness, understanding and reputation of the social care sector. The registered charity number is 1144458

The Board of Trustees is made up of: Peter Hay CBE (Chair), James Rook (Managing Director of headline sponsor Sanctuary Social Care), Beverley Williams (Founder), Joanna Nicolas (Child Protection Consultant and Author), Ana Popovici (Deputy Director Children’s Services, London Borough of Hillingdon) and Rob Mitchell (Principal Social Worker, Bradford Council)

The awards are open to qualified practitioners throughout England with a range of individual and team categories for those working in both children’s and adult departments.

  1. The sponsors for the Social Worker of the Year Awards 2018 are as follows:
    • Sanctuary Social Care – Headline Sponsors (Overall Social Worker of the Year, Best Social Work Employer of the Year)
    • The British Association of Social Workers – Corporate Partner (Lifetime Achievement, Newly Qualified Adult Social Worker of the Year)
    • Devon County Council – Category Supporter (Mental Health Social Worker of the Year)
    • Hampshire County Council – Category Sponsor (Creative & Innovative Social Work Practice)
    • Bradford Council – Category Sponsor (Student Social Worker of the Year)
    • North Lincolnshire Council – Category Sponsor (Practice Educator of the Year)
    • Kent County Council – Category Sponsor (Team Leader of the Year, Children’s Services)
    • Sunderland City Council – Category Sponsor (Team Leader of the Year, Adult Services)
    • UNISON – Category Sponsor (Team of the Year, Adult Services)
    • Barnardo’s – Category Sponsor (Children’s Social Worker of the Year)
    • Tees Valley Local Authority Child and Adult Services – Category Sponsor (Making a Difference)
    • Essex County Council – Category Sponsor (Championing Social Work Values)
    • London Borough of Lambeth – Category sponsor (Team of the Year, Children’s Services)
    • Children’s Social Work Matters – Category Sponsor (Newly Qualified Children’s Social Worker of the Year)
    • Servelec  – Category Sponsor (Adult Social Worker of the Year).