Senior Practitioner - DBIT
The Divisional Based Intervention Teams (D-BIT) have been operational within Children and Family services since early 2012. The service has a proven track record of improving outcomes for young people and their families and addressing areas where there are difficulties in the relationships that exist between family members so that young people can continue to live safely within their homes and family networks. These teams are a key element of the current Children's Social Care strategy to drive down the need for care placements, particularly for older children, and are working in partnership with a range of other innovative services to provide early help and intensive intervention across the spectrum of need.
D-BIT work on a voluntary basis with young people aged 8 -17 who are on the edge of care. The teams work with the whole family utilising strengths based and solution focused methodology to support them in developing and implementing sustainable, long term solutions. Intervention is intensive and time limited and as a consequence, caseloads are comparatively small and offer the opportunity for direct and frequent engagement at the heart of families.
This role with the D-BIT Service will require staff to work a basic week (Mon - Thur 9-5:30pm and Fri 9-4:30pm) but also to be able to work flexibly, which will include some evenings (until 9pm) and occasional weekend activity. Time will be taken back in lieu. When on duty there will be a need to be on call until 9pm.
A fantastic opportunity has arisen for a Senior Practitioner working in West D-BIT Service, based in Goodman House covering the large West Essex area.
D-BIT Core Teams work with children / young people and their families where there are concerns that the relationships are strained and referring social workers have assessed there to be a significant risk of the child or young person entering the care system
D-BIT work with families holds the child / young person at the centre of engagement with a mindfulness regarding the importance of family and relationships at all times. The majority of the families we work with, at the time of our meeting with them, are finding it difficult to communicate with one another and may have lost sight of the things that strengthen and sustain their relationships and lives. Our work is about listening, reflecting and talking with families; supporting them to find their own way to move things on in their relationships with one another. Our best hopes are that this work will enable them to build bridges and provide opportunities for family members to reengage with the things that work for them. Many individuals and families identify new things about themselves and their strengths that are helpful. We encourage everyone in the family to value the things that are working well and to do more of this. We explore the value of these changes with them in whole family conversations and activities. We approach our work in this way because we know that can work and promote good outcomes for children / young people and their families.
As an existing Senior Practitioner or experienced Social Worker who is successful on application for the post you will work flexibly with children and their families; most often within their homes and in their community We meet with families at times that work for them, so you would likely find yourself undertaking a considerable amount of work with families in their homes in the afternoons and early evenings. You may be required to work occasional times on weekends where it is a best fit for families. You will have the opportunity to develop knowledge, skills and experience of working in a busy and focussed Edge of Care Service, using a Solution Focused Approach in your practice with Children and their Families, and in your work and role with others in the Team, Service and wider professional network.
To hold and sustain a caseload consisting of the most sensitive, "complex and difficult" cases to which the post holder can bring to bear the highest standards of professional ability and a considerable depth of knowledge in relevant legislation in policy and practice methods. To provide a focus of specialist advice and professional consultation for Social Workers and contribute to the development of practice standards within the service. The post will also require the provision of reflective and solution focused supervision to DBIT staff. The successful candidate will, on occasions, need to deputise for the Team Manager, leading the team and management of duty services.
Skills, Knowledge and Experience
- A recognised social work qualification i.e. Diploma, degree or Masters in social work, CQSW, CSS or equivalent, with current registration with Social Work England as a registered social worker.
- Evidence of continuing professional development, aligned to any relevant Professional Competency/Capability frameworks or Knowledge and Skills Statements.
- Significant experience of social work, demonstrating a comprehensive and up to date understanding of all relevant legislation, regulation and guidance.
- Experience of mentoring both Social Work students and newly qualified and experienced Social Work staff, being a subject matter expert in professional social work practice.
- Experience of chairing meetings involving clients, family members and/or carers and other multi-agency professionals.
- Developing strong relationships with partners, other agencies and the local community to achieve joint objectives and offer a supportive framework for children, young people and families.
- In depth understanding of delivery of value for money interventions balanced against need.
- Proven track record of clear decision making in order to highlight and limit the potential risks associated with intervention.
The role requires you to be mobile travelling around the West of Essex and beyond, transporting service users and their belongings and to be able to do so in an emergency. Driving licence and car or the ability to meet the mobility requirements of the role through other means is essential.