These are examples of teams or organisations that have provided assessed work placements for our social work students:
Homeless Intervention Team, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
The Homeless Intervention Team has been taking a couple of social work students from Goldsmiths on placement each year for the past 10 years.
Many of our service users have been street-homeless in the past, with a wide range of complex needs, including drugs and alcohol dependency, long-term mental health issues, and other psychosocial problems. We use housing, mental capacity and safeguarding legislation. We are a multi-professional team, seeking to work holistically with our service users.
We are based in a diverse and vibrant area in central London. Students must have a strong commitment to anti-discriminatory practice, plus good self-reflective skills. A genuine zest for social justice is key. The level of responsibility will vary according to the student’s skill-base and the level of their placement.
Community Mental Health Team, London Borough of Lewisham
The Speedwell Community Mental Health Team is based in south-east London. Its operational policies are governed by both Lewisham Council and the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.
There is a long history of providing placements for social work students within the team. Staff work alongside students and university staff to induct, supervise and support student practitioners.
The team provides a two-week induction, weekly individual supervision, team supervision, formal statutory experience and duty cover. Students develop a caseload of complex work, commensurate with their skills and level of capability. Many of our former students return as qualified paid employees.
Child and Families in Need Team, Royal Borough of Greenwich
The Child and Families in Need Team work on a patch-based approach – we work with small local communities within the borough, where we build links and understanding of local needs and local supports.
All of our cases are complex, with issues of neglect, abuse, poverty, family breakdown and social isolation being common themes. Students contribute positively to our work, by having a reduced caseload of families to support. All students are inducted into our work and are provided with weekly supervision.
Students’ caseloads are diverse, but generally include supported safeguarding work, work with children on support plans, work with children in the early stages of the care system and families in short term crises. We are based in a very diverse and multi-ethnic area in south-east London, where cultural awareness and an ability to focus on “the child” is key.
End of Life Care Team, St Christophers Hospice
St Christophers is an internationally-renowned hospice based in south-east London, working with diverse communities and a particularly challenging and emotionally vulnerable client group.
This is incredibly sensitive and emotional work, so the level of support and care we provide staff and students alike is thorough and focused on empathy, compassion and dignity.
Students’ need to have a robust approach to self-reflection and self-care. All of our students from Goldsmiths have proven highly-motivated, creative and diligent, with a willingness to engage proactively with our patients and their families.