A view of Hiwaun in Rhondda Cynon Taf
“I love Rhondda Cynon Taf’s (RCT) Children’s Services philosophy of striving for the betterment of the children and families we work with,” says Linda, Team Leader with the team. intensive intervention. “I work with a wonderful group of people who are truly dedicated and committed to their roles and truly looking to make a difference in the community.”
Linda’s words are a tribute to the close-knit, highly motivated and dedicated teams within RCT Children’s Services.
“The RCT team never fails to impress me with their compassion for families, resilience, skills and creativity,” says Annabel Lloyd, Director of Children’s Services. “The experiences of children and families with our services and the results we achieve together really matter to us.
Make staff well-being a priority
The support and well-being of staff within the service is central to the work of the Children’s Services Management Team.
“RCT has a team culture and supportive ethic,” says Annabel. “Our practitioners are supported by a strong and experienced management team that offers a range of supervision and mentorship opportunities.”
Indeed, RCT is developing a program to support the well-being of practitioners, with an emphasis on building resilient and supportive teams. They have recently introduced a staff wellbeing questionnaire and are setting up a forum to give practitioners the opportunity to speak up and hear how they can best support them in their role.
It’s an approach that was welcomed by Care Inspectorate Wales in its Assurance Check 2021, which said: “Ensuring staff wellbeing is a key priority for leaders and senior managers. We have seen positive examples of promoting staff well-being. Examples included a self-referral process for staff to access occupational health, mindfulness sessions and the availability of counselling. Staff told us they felt supported by their colleagues and managers to do their jobs.
Practitioners within RCT have access to an Occupational Health Unit, which offers well-being support and advice, such as counselling, health monitoring, nursing and physiotherapy services. The council has also introduced a new staff wellbeing initiative called ‘CARI’, which is a confidential digital wellbeing tool offering a wide range of support to meet the needs of practitioners.
Learning and development opportunities
RCT also offers practitioners a wide variety of learning and development opportunities. This is delivered through an internal learning and development centre, which actively supports practitioners at every level to maintain their skills and ongoing professional development, and includes:
- A comprehensive “first year in practice” program that supports newly qualified social workers.
- An opportunity to enroll in our mandatory consolidation program, after successfully completing your first year of practice.
- A range of sponsored post-qualification programs available for Continuing Professional Education and Learning (CPEL).
- Opportunities for experienced social workers who want to move into management, to enroll in the Team Leader Development Program.
- Tailored continuing professional development opportunities available for workers in specialist positions, to enhance their current knowledge and further develop their skills.
Access to this center of learning and development has been invaluable to Linda: “The RCT board fully supported me in obtaining a degree in social work and has since supported me to obtain the qualification of team leader development.
RCT also offers an extensive training schedule.
“I had a lot of career development opportunities and had access to a lot of useful training,” says Gwen, social worker in an intensive intervention team.
To learn more about working for RCT Children’s Services, attend our Virtual Recruitment Party on April 6 at 6:30 p.m., which will include information about our current social work vacancies, benefits of living and working at RCT, learning and development opportunities and our support and wellness offerings.
Student social workers will also have the opportunity to discover the RCT’s first-year practice program.
Check out the latest social work opportunities at RCT here.