‘Respecting diversity through joint social action’ at Highlands College for World Social Work Day 2023

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On Tuesday 21 March we celebrated World Social Work Day 2023 with a large event in the Hall at Highlands College, the theme of which was “respecting diversity through joint social action”.

The event was designed to bring people together from across the island and celebrate the profession while promoting diversity and collaboration.

The event was well attended with representations from statutory services, as well as partner agencies in the community and third sector (including Jersey Women’s Refuge, Mind Jersey, Shelter Trust, Dementia Jersey, and Jersey Cares). Students who are currently working towards gaining their social work degrees at University College Jersey (UCJ) were also in attendance.

Laura Simpson, social work programme lead, supported by Jess Garner and team pulled together a programme of engaging topics delivered by expert speakers. Particular highlights included:

  • Feedback from people with lived experience
  • Senior leaders presenting an exciting new initiative “Social Work Board” in order to promote social work identity on the island
  • Paul McGinnety who spoke about some of the local strategies and clusters to encourage collaboration
  • Washington Gwatidzo who spoke about promoting diversity and the importance of team work
  • A presentation by our first ever UCJ social work graduates about their journey on the course, qualifying as social workers and completing their ASYE (assessed and supported year in practice)

Feedback from the day was incredibly positive…  Here’s what two attendees had to say when we asked, ‘What have you enjoyed most about World Social Work Day (WSWD) 2023 at Highlands College?’:
‘Networking with others and across services and departments. Loved hearing from Paul McGinnety and Jennie Pasternak and Paul Watson. All the speakers were great!’ ‘LOVED Luke’s story Chloe and Holly. The newly qualified Social Workers FABULOUS presentation. Tina Hesse is a legend and Washington Gwatizo just a beacon of light!’

This is the second such event held at Highlands College to celebrate World Social Work Day and is one that we hope will become a firm fixture in the cross college calendar.

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