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County social worker fronts national care strategy launch

Published February 07, 2023 9.08am

A County Durham social worker's passionate account of her job is being rolled out nationally as part of the launch of a new government strategy.

Aimee Smith social worker

Our social worker Aimee Smith (left) with Gillian Keegan

Footage of our social worker Aimee Smith speaking of her love for her work is being used by the Department for Education (DfE) to promote its new Children's Social Care Strategy.

The strategy is the government's long-term plan to make sure all children have the stability and protection they need; and to improve support for vulnerable children and families.

The video of Aimee was filmed at a recent visit by the Secretary of State for Education Gillian Keegan to our Woodhouse Close Family Centre in Bishop Auckland.

During the visit, the minister met Aimee and a number of other social workers we employ to support children and families. They were able to tell the Secretary of State of their routes into social care, be that apprenticeships or as in Aimee's case, the traditional degree path.

In the video, released on the DfE's Facebook page, Aimee talks about how rewarding she finds the job she has done since September 2021, supporting children with disabilities from right across County Durham.

She states: "Part of my role is to promote the voice of the child and help them develop skills in communication. To some people it might not seem much, but for that young person to be able to say 'I want a bag of crisps' or 'I want a drink of pop,' is absolutely amazing.

"It's really really heartwarming - it's those little things which are just absolutely fantastic. So I absolutely love my job, love it."

To see the video, visit our Facebook page.

Cllr Ted Henderson, our Cabinet member for children and young people's services, said: "We are so proud of Aimee and thrilled that she is being used as the national face of this new strategy.

"It is abundantly clear when you see the video just how passionate she is about her work and I can honestly say that that is replicated across our teams.

"Aimee and her colleagues already provide good services for children and young families here in County Durham and the new strategy provides us with an opportunity to build on and strengthen those services."

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