Ceartas & Learning Network West Partnership: Social Work Student Placements26 April, 2023
SIAA Independent Advocacy Awareness Week 2023: Aileen and Jennifer in conversation28 April, 2023
This is Independent Advocacy Awareness Week 2023.
“Before undertaking my Social Work placement with Ceartas I had a brief insight into advocacy as in a in second year we had a class focusing on independent advocacy with a guest speaker. This class gave me an understanding of the importance of advocacy in relation to social work and the legal duty to uphold an individual’s rights and obtain their views.
Since commencing my placement with Ceatas my views on Advocacy have definitely changed and I have gained much more knowledge surrounding it. I understand the importance of having an independent advocate for an individual in issues that relate to care and treatment plans or future care plans. I understand more about the legal right to advocacy under the Mental Health Act. From the brief introduction to advocacy, I did think of advocacy to be focused more on mental health but since undertaking the placement I have learned that advocacy deals with all service user groups including dementia, mental health, disabilities, learning disabilities and autism, addictions.
While being at Ceartas the most enjoyable part of my placement is getting to work and interact with the individuals who access the service. It has allowed me to work on my communication skills, interaction skills and how to work in a person-centered manner.
I also really enjoy the variety of work I have been involved in, each case can vary from access to services or looking for information on things such as power of attorney to detentions in hospital under the Mental Health Act or Child Protection processes.
During my time at Ceartas Advocacy I have learned valuable skills such as multiagency team working, communication skills and especially how to communicate and interact with individuals deemed to be lacking capacity to understand their views. I have also learned a lot about the law and the inner workings of social work practice from a third sector view. I feel I will use all the skills and knowledge gained from my placement with Ceartas within my practice as a social worker and I will be sure to seek involvement of independent advocacy in practice.”Jennifer Rankin, Student Placement