Children’s Social Worker of the Year
ORGANISATION: Coventry City Council
AWARD(S): Children's Social Worker of the Year
Alexandra has been employed by Coventry City Council since 2014, working within child protection across the West Midlands.
Throughout her career in children’s social work, Alexandra has shown a passion for improving the lives of unaccompanied asylum seeking children and their experiences of social work and, as a result, was recently appointed to Team Leader with the Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children (UASC) service.
Credited by colleagues for her unwavering devotion, Alexandra often gives up her free time to organise social activities for the young people she supports, helping them to build friendships and settle into their new lives.
During the pandemic, Alexandra devised a schedule of celebrations and arranged food deliveries so that all children, young people and care leavers didn’t feel isolated.
She has since formed a group with colleagues that regularly meets to make sure that all cultural festivals impacting unaccompanied young people in Coventry are recognised in a meaningful way.
Alexandra has played an instrumental role in developing and expanding Coventry City Council’s Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children (UASC) service, personally forming new relationships and networks with community organisations, including refugee centres, across the region.
In addition to leading training for new social workers within the team, Alexandra has also created a programme to make sure that all social workers in Coventry understand how to best support unaccompanied young people.
Hear from Alexandra in her own words below.
WHAT THEY SAID:
I was very impressed by Alexandra's dedication to Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children, she has gone miles above what is usually expected from a Social Worker in these circumstances. These children will have felt very welcome and cared for by Alexandra.
Dan Grimes, Newly Qualified Children's Social Worker of the Year 2019
Alexandra has clearly gone above and beyond for unaccompanied asylum seeking children, the input and commitment to practice is above and beyond that which is expected to meet her responsibilities as a social worker and will likely have made a significant lifelong impact on the children she has worked with.
Emma Moore, Family Court Adviser, Cafcass
Alexandra has natural leadership qualities and is making positive changes and spreading awareness which in turn is having a positive impact on the outcome for young people, but also positive changes being made to the organisation.
Tehseen Kauser, Interim Head of Service - Looked after Children and Leaving Care, London Borough of Hillingdon
Many people seem to be so disapproving of social workers but for me you have been my saviour, the person that saved me from the destructive path I was on. You saw that I was broken and piece by piece you have helped me put myself back together. There is no doubt that without your support, help and guidance I wouldn’t be the young person I am today. You very much inspire me to be the best version of me that I can be. My future, which was once bleak, is now bright and full of ambition.
Feedback from a young person supported by Alexandra
Alexandra is a credit to the social work profession, she is extremely dedicated to the children, young people and families she supports as well as improving practice and outcomes for those she does not directly work with. Alexandra works with some young people who have been significantly criminally exploited and as a result display behaviour which can be threatening and intimidating. However, Alexandra seeks to understand the reasons behind this and that allows her to breakthrough where other professionals cannot.
Matt Claydon, Strategic Leader for Looked After Children, Coventry City Council
Marissa Langley, Surrey County Council
Paige McMahon, Derbyshire County Council
Liam Mills, Portsmouth City Council