Graduates 'Step Up' to social work with council

A group of graduates are embarking on a career in children’s social work as part of the national Step Up to Social Work programme.

The Step Up to Social Work students, front, centre, Rani Kaur Randhawa, Chris Wood and Chantelle Bushell, with, back row left to right, Organisational Development Advisor, Paul Beddows, Social worker and previous Step Up student Sam Cartwright, Principal Social Worker Jenny Rogers, Head of Service Strengthening Families Louise Anderson, Service Manager Hannah Bates and Councillor Beverley Momenabadi, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People and, front row, left, Executive Director of Families Emma Bennett and, right, Deputy Director of Social Care Alison Hinds
The Step Up to Social Work students, front, centre, Rani Kaur Randhawa, Chris Wood and Chantelle Bushell, with, back row left to right, Organisational Development Advisor, Paul Beddows, Social worker and previous Step Up student Sam Cartwright, Principal Social Worker Jenny Rogers, Head of Service Strengthening Families Louise Anderson, Service Manager Hannah Bates and Councillor Beverley Momenabadi, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People and, front row, left, Executive Director of Families Emma Bennett and, right, Deputy Director of Social Care Alison Hinds

The group have joined Wolverhampton Council, marking the second year that the council has worked with the Step Up programme to give people an alternative route into the profession.

Step Up to Social Work is an intensive postgraduate diploma in social work training programme that enables students to become a qualified social worker in 14 months.

The three Step Up students who have recently joined are Chantelle Bushell, Rani Kaur Randhawa and Chris Wood.

They are currently on placement in adult social work teams before they move into Children's Social Work later this year.

Councillor Beverley Momenabadi, cabinet member for children and young people, said: "We are delighted to be giving more people a route into social work and the chance to learn through practice whilst they are also supported in their academic studies.

"Wolverhampton is a fantastic place to be a social worker and I would like to welcome Chantelle, Rani and Chris and wish them the very best as they embark on their social work careers with the council."

Applicants must have completed a degree level qualification in any discipline other than social work and, amongst other criteria, have at least six months experience working directly with children, young people, families, carers or adults.

The current course started in January, is delivered at the University of Birmingham and will end in March 2023.

At that point, successful candidates are expected to practice in Wolverhampton for at least two years, or with one of the other organisations in the West Midlands which are partners.

Councillor Linda Leach, Cabinet Member for Adult Services, added: "Our social workers do an incredible job and it's so important that we make sure we support the next generation of social workers into the profession."

For more information about the Step Up programme people can visit bit.ly/3sGwzqM

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