My name is Sarah-Jayne Reynolds and I work as a Supervising Social Worker for Calon Cymru Fostering. I have worked for the company since January 2010, I was only meant to be here for 3 months as a maternity cover, but was so impressed by the ethos and team that I requested a permanent role. I love the variety and spectrum of children and young people we work with every day. Due to being a long-established agency we have forged good relationships with our bordering local authorities and their Social Workers, which ultimately helps the children and carers we support. This has been especially useful in this time of crisis, helping us to think outside of our normal parameters and work together as a team to maintain and make placements.
Since the lockdown, I have made 3 placements with careful risk assessing and PPE for all parties involved. These children have continued to be carefully matched and all meetings/information sharing has taken place virtually. It has worked really well and everyone has worked as a team to achieve the best outcomes for the children in our care.
As a supervising social worker I feel privileged to be invited in (virtually or by phone) to speak to children and young people and marvel at how they are adapting to their worlds suddenly becoming so small. Each week I continue to reuse recipes/ activities I have seen from our resourceful children and carers, to utilise on my own 4 and 7 year olds (with some success).
Juggling home schooling, family life and work from your house is difficult but the Calon Cymru team continue to be flexible and adaptive to my needs as social worker and as parent of young children. There are times when my meeting has been crashed by a loud 4 year old exclaiming he needs more snacks or the toilet but people understand this is part of working from home for a lot of people.
Looking to the future I am heartened by the adaptation of the agency with fostering assessments ongoing, higher levels of supervision/ support for carer and placement stability being at the heart of all of our work. I wish you all well in these unprecedented times and thank the children and carers for never failing to brighten my day.