Welcome back to another carers blog by Matthew McKenzie. It recently was World Social Work Day, which took place on the 21st March 2023. The theme for 2023 World Social work day was ‘Respecting diversity through joint social action. Social workers are very important if you are caring for someone. It helps to get that extra support regarding your role as an unpaid carer.
Social workers are becoming a rare resource these days, so it is important to raise awareness of social workers. It is also important to value them. World Social Work day allows social workers worldwide stand together to send the common message of relieving people’s suffering, fight for social justice, and improve lives and communities.
Social works help people with health, psychological or social problems. This in turn builds healthier communities. It was fortunate I was allowed to present at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust World Social work day event.
The event took place at Maudsley’s conference centre “Ortus”
The event organisers used the theme on learning from the voices of service users and carers in mental health social work.
We had some great speakers from that event. A special mention to Jo Lambert and her mental health focus. You can check out her books in the link below.
I started off my presentation on what I feel was the importance of world social work day. Of course I asked the audience what they thought about the awareness day. I then read a poem from my book “The Poetry book of mental health caring”
You can see my presentation from my video below.
The poem I read was called “My Story”
I then told how my carer’s journey unfolded and how Social workers worked with carer and service user.
How did Social workers helped my role as a carer?
- I explained to the audience that it was important that social workers are knowledgeable of the services and explained them to my mother and myself.
- Some social workers saw me as an asset. Some social workers saw me as part of a support network helping to support my mother.
- It is important social workers use psychology to help heal. Some social workers talked about what can be done, rather than what could not be done, so constantly providing a positive focus.
- One of the most important roles of a social worker is explaining about carers assessment. The carer’s assessment is an important tool for a carer to learn more about their needs.
- Lastly referring me on to carer support was invaluable
All in all the NHS Maudsley gave me a powerful voice to promote my voice as a former mental health carer. I hope awareness of social workers continue to grow