For some children, a foster carer plays an extremely important role in their lives; giving them a family-based environment to thrive safely. Training, developing, and supporting these foster carers to provide this care, love, security and stability to each and every child is vital – and this professional and emotional support requires a specific, specialised role: the supervising social worker. But what is the role of a supervising social worker? And how do they work with our foster families?
What is the role of a supervising social worker?
The role of a supervising social worker involves many different responsibilities. Not only does it involve the supervision of foster carers, which might include safeguarding issues raised by a child’s social worker, but they also help with the emotional and practical support a foster carer may need. The role of a supervising social worker includes:
Keeping in touch
A supervising social worker will ensure all lines of communication remain open. They will keep in frequent touch with foster families, social workers and the foster children and young people throughout the entire placement. A supervising social worker will make regular home visits to the foster parents’ homes, along with making regular phone calls and generally touching base with everyone involved in the child or young person’s life.
Arranging additional support
If any interventions are ever needed, or a child is in need of any additional support (such as therapy or learning support) a supervising social worker will be able to arrange for any additional support services that may be needed.
The role of a supervising social worker is also to support foster carers with attending all their meetings, helping with their report writing and keeping records for them. Along with this, keep records on each child’s progression and monitor how each of them is getting on in each of their placements and make all statutory visits.
Support with a child’s birth parents
The supervising social worker helps to bridge the gap between the children and young people in a placement and their birth parents and families. They will work with the child’s foster parents and social worker to manage and, where appropriate, maintain contact between the children and their birth families.
Supervising social workers will also help the foster parents navigate the emotions that might come with a child being unable to be in contact with their birth parents, which can happen for various reasons.
Identify training opportunities
Along with all of the above, the supervising social worker will also identify any training opportunities each foster carer may need. They will help to get each foster carer up to impeccable standard, and help them to achieve their own, personal learning and development goals.
The supervising social worker helps to recruit our incredible foster carers, they arrange and run ‘Form F’ assessments and let’s our carers know about all the training opportunities every potential carer may need before the child arrives into their care.
Think becoming a supervising social worker is something you would be interested in doing? Find out more about How to Become a Supervising Social Worker. Alternatively, if you have more questions regarding fostering, please contact us, or give us a call on 0800 566 8317 and we’ll be able to answer any questions you may have.