My day starts with me checking the calendar to see what the day holds. I then discuss upcoming appointments and activities with the rest of the team and we decide who will be responsible for what. As a case worker communication with the rest of the team is essential as it is my responsibility to make sure other staff are up to date about my clients.
I spend the first part of the morning replying to emails and looking into new opportunities for my clients. I email a programme that offers cycling classes for asylum seekers as one of my clients is interesting in learning to cycle. I’m always looking for organisations and activities that could benefit my clients. Today I found a new programme offering ESOL and other educational opportunities for refugees and asylum seekers, as well as opportunities for free wellbeing activities in the area.
Throughout the morning client’s come to the office. One client comes in with her baby to enquire about the timing of her appointment and we have a chat. Another client comes in to ask if I can help her to contact her psychologist to request a letter; we find the number and phone together. I also support a client to request her medication from the pharmacy, as English is not her first language.
After lunch I have a 1:1 meeting with one of my clients to update her support plan review. We update this every month to make sure clients have their needs met and to identify new areas where support is needed. The client is Vietnamese and still learning English, so we use the telephone interpreting service. We talk about how the client is settling into the house, how her asylum case is progressing and how she is finding the Vietnamese outreach support service that I referred her to. 1:1 meetings are a good chance to build a trusting relationship with clients and understand more about their specific needs.
In the afternoon I accompany another client to the hospital down the road. She has an appointment with the midwife to check her health and baby’s development. I make a note of the midwife’s advice so we can continue to support the client to be healthy.
When we get back to the house we join in with a restorative dance session which helps the women to relax and enjoy themselves. We have organised the restorative dance organisation to do a four week course at our house. As a caseworker I am always looking out to make links with other organisations like these. Next month we will have the “Shine” programme coming to the house which will help the women to learn new skills and build confidence.
In the Safe House, working as a Case Worker I need to be flexible and open because each day is unique, as unique as the people I am supporting and empowering. In my work I use the person centred approach focusing on the client’s needs, how to improve their lives and supporting them to overcome there traumatic experiences.