Who is a social worker and what do they do?
Every child and young person who is looked after will have a social worker who will be responsible for their care. They are there for you.
The social worker will visit you and explain to you why you are being ‘looked after’. ‘Looked after’ is the term that is used to mean a child is in care. They will explain to you how long you may be looked after for and will support you with the help of other, such as school and health workers, to put together a health plan.
Your social worker will ask you about your wishes and feelings. This will include asking you how you are feeling about the changes in your life, what you want to do, how you want things to happen and what support you need.
When your social worker comes to visit you they will come to where you live, but at times, they can also meet you at a different place if you like. Did you know that you can ask for extra visits too?
They will visit you every 6 weeks and talk to you about how things are for you. You can let them know how school is going, if you have been well, and anything else you may want to talk about. They will ask about your hobbies, things you are interested in or things you would like to do in your spare time.
They will make sure you are safe and looked after properly. You can ask them any questions you have. If your social worker does not know the answer they will find out and come back to you. Their visits will be written up and kept as a record to help with making decisions about your care. Children and young people have a right to see and have a copy of the records. You can ask your social worker about this.
Your social worker will also talk to you about ‘contact’. Contact means keeping in touch with your family and friends, if it is safe for you to do so.