Not a ‘proper’ post this time but a few random thoughts that have occurred to me.
Firstly search terms on my blog. This is one of the more interesting aspects of having a blog and it is one that I’m sure others can attest to. Yes, I get a list of all the search terms that people type into google to come up with this blog.
So, I can see that over the past few weeks, I’ve had LOTS of searches for ‘deprivation of liberty’ ‘mental capacity act’ ‘best interests assessor/assessment’ and variations such as ‘case studies for best interests assessment course’ and ‘jobs for best interests assessor’. A sign of the times, without doubt.
I’ve seen a surge of searches for ‘gifts for social workers’ – much though I hope some of those people know me and are planning something special, I’m sure it’s related to the upcoming World Social Work Day – forget the suggestions I touted on the post – chocolate is ALWAYS good.
I still get quite a few hits on hypochondria and more than a few searching for information about memory clinics and recently, a number have been searching for information about making affirmations instead of taking oaths.
I don’t get as many ‘strange’ searches as I used to and while that’s good in the sense that people are finding what they’re looking for – it used to keep me marginally entertained!
In any case, it is a good way of judging a zeitgeist moment!
I work on a floor of my office where there is a rough ration of 25 women to 2 men. Why do I still feel awkward going into the men’s toilet then when there is absolutely no difference except the little sign on the door? That is good social conditioning!
Sometimes the sheer negativity of colleagues can really be incredibly draining. I have to bite my tongue sometimes but it’s worth it in the long run. I think there is nothing sadder than working alongside someone who is clearly burnt out and resentful but can’t leave for financial reasons.
I am SO glad I jumped from a generic adult community care team to a specialist mental health team. Care management was turning me into a word processor where any attempt at creativity was being sucked out of me by targets and systems. I still do some care management now but have more flexibility with it. I still work to the same targets and with the same systems. The difference is that I do other things as well – that’s the key. I haven’t had the will to exist managed out of me – which I fear was close to happening in my previous job.
Madmutt asked me on Twitter why I thought generic training was important in social work. It was hard to respond in 140 character messages! He did an admirable job of getting the argument across that teachers and nurses specialise early so why would it be different for social workers.
My (a little more extended) answer is that it is not strictly comparable. Of course specialisation needs to happen but not necessarily so early as after the first year of a social work degree course. Families do not exist in isolation and I, personally, feel it is important that a wider understanding is held by ALL social workers of the knowledge in common and factors which affect life course work as well as a knowledge of the theoretical bases of social work which are common regardless of client group. The fundamentals of risk management and care planning are transferable.
Rather than narrowing down the studies between children and adults. I’ve always felt, since my course, that, for example, a however brief, for example, a knowledge of mental health is necessary for all areas of social work.
A background of social policy, equally is essential. As is a knowledge of how the different systems work and operate.
While general nursing and psychiatric nursing are substantially different and teaching secondary or primary requires arguably different skill sets – social workers do have a commonality of skills and my gut feeling is that in the UK, children’s and adult’s services have already been split into different directorates in local authorities – splitting the training would destroy the links between the services which need to engage and work with each other, perhaps more so than Children’s social services does with Educational services.
I have a half-post that has been sitting in my ‘draft’ folder for a month or so all about this. I might dust it off and polish it up shortly as it begins to seem relevant again!
More than I expected to write but there you go! Back to normal service tomorrow.. oh and as a final thought, when should I start worrying about my blogging becoming too prolific? A few months ago I promised I would write less but I wasn’t very good at sticking to that!
Anyone have any general ideas as to whether I’m posting too much or about right (I won’t give ‘too little’ as an option as I wouldn’t comfortably manage any more!).
Any other suggestions, ideas or general feedback would be welcomed.