The Social Worker of the Year Awards has announced that broadcast journalist and TV presenter, Ashley John-Baptiste, will present the awards event on 04 November 2022.
As a care leaver himself, Ashley is passionate about raising the aspirations of looked-after children and fully credits his social worker for helping him get to where he is today.
This will be Ashley’s third time hosting the awards ceremony, which highlights the many outstanding achievements of practitioners, social work teams, and organisations across the country.
Ashley was taken into care at the age of four, growing up between several different foster families and children’s homes across South London. He went on to study history at the University of Cambridge.
As BBC Senior Reporter and Presenter, Ashley hosts shows like Expert Witness, For Love or Money and is a regular face on The One Show and Morning Live.
He has also made many documentaries, including ‘Split up in Care: Life without Siblings’, about sibling relationships in the care system.
Ashley has produced features and podcasts including the exploration of growing up in care, racism, and the lived experience of black students in the UK.
Speaking ahead of the awards, Ashley said: “I know from my own experience how important social workers are in supporting young people who find themselves in difficult circumstances. I’m delighted to be involved with the awards again this year and seeing people face to face. I’m looking forward to shining a light on the outstanding social work happening across the UK.”
Peter Hay CBE, Chair of the Social Worker of the Year Awards, said: “We’re thrilled that Ashley is returning host the awards this year. Ashley is a very talented media professional, but more importantly he is an inspirational role model for young people with lived experience of social care.
“He is the perfect champion for everything that our charity stands for, which gives dedicated, committed and passionate social workers the recognition they deserve.”
This year over 90 outstanding practitioners, teams, and organisations have been selected as finalists in 17 categories, chosen by independent judging panels of young care leavers, social workers, industry leaders, and people with lived experience of social work.
Alongside categories highlighting exceptional practice in children’s and adult services, mental health, social work education, and social justice, two new awards have been introduced in this year’s event programme – Supporting Children in Education and Digital Transformation in Social Work.
The winners from each category will be announced at the ceremony which will be broadcasted live to social workers across the country from London on 04 November.
The Social Worker of the Year Awards 2022 is supported by headline sponsor Sanctuary Personnel, and Corporate Partner, BASW, Hampshire County Council Adults’ Health and Care, Wandsworth London Borough Council, Devon County Council, Children’s Social Work Matters, Suffolk County Council, Suffolk County Council, UNISON, Lambeth London Borough Council, S12 Solutions, Torbay Council, Coventry City Council, Essex County Council, Staffordshire University, and West Midlands ADASS.
The local authorities of Gloucestershire, Waltham Forest, Bradford City, Dorset, Stockton-on-Tees, Hammersmith and Fulham, Wiltshire, West Sussex, Central Bedfordshire, Brighton and Hove, and Herefordshire support the awards this year as ‘Thank You’ sponsors. Visit here to see our full list of sponsors > https://www.socialworkawards.com/sponsorship/