Outstanding Contribution to Social Work


Bob & Annette Holman

AWARD(S): Outstanding Contribution to Social Work


Bob and Annette Holman embody community social work. They have devoted their lives to supporting others, while campaigning tirelessly against poverty and inequality in society.


The couple met when they were both social studies students on work placement and later became a child care officer and medical social worker respectively. In the 1970s, they moved into academia but it wasn’t long before the pair gave up the comfortable lifestyle that came with it and moved with their young family to one of Bath’s most impoverished estates – Southdown. Here, they ran a successful community project for nearly a decade.


In 1987, Bob and Annette returned to Glasgow – Annette’s home town – and helped to establish community organisation, Family Action in Rogerfield and Easterhouse (FARE). Now in its 25th year, FARE has played a key role in reducing gang-related crime on the estates and has changed the lives of hundreds of young people.


As Ray Jones, trustee of the awards and friend of the couple, put it, ‘not many couples contribute in the way that Bob and Annette have contributed together – they are a real team’. They have lived their lives based on their Christian faith and strong social values and are not just champions for social workers, but also for the families and communities they work alongside.


The Board of Trustees is delighted to present the Outstanding Contribution Award to Bob and Annette. They have selflessly dedicated their whole lives to changing the lives of hundreds of young people and their families.

James Rook, Managing Director, Sanctuary Social Care

A couple giving up their comfortable lifestyle and moving back into the heart of community social work is not something that happens every day. Bob and Annette truly deserve this award and the recognition that goes with it.

Ruth Smith, Publisher, Community Care

Bob and Annette have made a huge difference to the lives of so many people in some of the most challenging areas. They are champions of social work and social workers, campaigners against poverty and are a couple of tremendous integrity and humility.

Professor Ray Jones, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Social Work Awards Ltd

The commitment that Bob and Annette have in campaigning against poverty and inequality and championing the families and communities they work alongside is outstanding and they encompass everything we are looking for in this award.

Beverley Williams MBE, Founder, Social Work Awards

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