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A day in the life of an Engagement Worker


8:30 - 9:30am Admin (Work from home)


Checking emails, responding to messages, thinking and planning the day ahead. Checking diary appointments. Bracing myself for the day ahead!


10am - Home visit - Sommer Valley area


A young person who is not engaging in any form of education/training/employment and is unfocused and directionless with very little motivation. I meet at her home with mum present.


Asked her lots of questions regarding her interests and hobbies, ‘ What makes you happy?’, ‘What are your interests?’, ‘What would you like to do over the next 6 months or so?’, ‘ Are you interested in exploring options for your future?’.


After establishing some important foundations regarding motivation, desire to move forward, interests, confidence issues/fears, we look at possible ways forward and initial first steps to take.


She has a talent for drawing/art and finds that this makes her happy and relaxed. She also has reasonable skills in I. We discuss 2 areas to explore for our next session. Tattoo artist and graphic designer. I have agreed to send her some information regarding both of these sectors for her to consider so that we can discuss further at our next meeting. She is reluctant to meet away from the home at the moment as she can be quite anxious about going to unfamiliar places. I try to encourage her to think about meeting me next time at our youth hub, she said that she would think about it, a small step in the right direction.


12pm - Safeguarding Issue


A young person has been placed into a hostel and is under threat of being evicted due to unacceptable behaviour. I receive a call from the young person outlining his anxieties. I re-assure him and immediately call his social worker and flag up the concerns. She agrees to do a visit to the hostel to try and negotiate his residence there. I subsequently receive several other calls from the young person in a stressed state and try to calm him down and assure him that his social worker is on her way to try and sort things out.


1pm - One Stop Shop Keynsham


A one to one session with a lad with learning difficulties who has dropped out of several colleges and programmes. I have arranged a visit to a local charity shop as part of a plan for a traineeship with Bath College. I brief him on what to expect and the questions they will probably ask. I praise him on his appearance as he has made a big effort to look smart and presentable. We then both go to the charity shop to have an initial meeting with the manager.


1:30pm - Charity shop visit- Keynsham


I introduce young person to the manager (she is expecting us as I arranged the meeting the week before).


She runs through all the expectations for a volunteer at the shop and introduces the young person to other staff. She gives the young person an opportunity to ask her some questions (we have 3 already prepared). She is impressed with his appearance and overall attitude and offers him to start the following week on a trial basis to which the young person agrees.


Myself and the young person have a de-brief and I have arranged to call him on the morning of his placement next week to ensure he is ok and ready to go, to which he agrees. A successful meeting, all very pleased with the outcome. Young person smiles, which is a very unusual occurrence, a breakthrough!


2:30-3:30 - Chasing college and young person re an apprenticeship


There is some confusion regarding an apprenticeship a young person has applied for and whether or not the college has received her application. I speak on the phone with the young person and family and try to get to the bottom of this. I get lots of stories re the phone broke, battery went, couldn’t call the college back after they called and loads of confusion from the young person and family in general!


I decide to try and track down the application and contact the college, several holds on the phone later, I get to the person in question. She manages to find the application and stresses that it has been delayed because, what I thought she said, the young person and family were procrastinating and not responding. I explain that they have had issues with their phone and so couldn’t respond accordingly. She is then confused as she is talking about the apprenticeship placement provider not the young person and family! I have a light bulb moment and apologise for the misunderstanding. Not a problem. Apparently the work place is the one holding up the process which is thoroughly annoying the college. The good news is that young person has been shortlisted!


I call the young person to tell her the good news, she responds with, ‘Oh my God!’ and I congratulate her on getting this far. I tell her to be patient due to some hold ups but we will meet again next week to discuss any potential interview to get her prepared. An excellent result for a lot of phone calls and holding the phone listening to very irritating jingles!


3:30-3:45pm - Calls from the Children in Need Team/Young Homeless Team


Receive calls from the above teams regarding the young person in the hostel under threat of eviction. They have temporarily negotiated him staying there for now but impressed on him that any further unacceptable behaviour would result in him being removed. I call the young person and stress this to him and arrange a visit to see him to discuss future plans regarding education/training once he has a more stable environment to live in.


3:45-4pm - Disappointing news from a young person


The young person working in an apprenticeship that we had found together has decided it is not for him and he says that he has now left and could we meet up to discuss further options. I re-assure him that these things can happen and praise him for trying it in the first place. We arrange to meet the following week.


4-5pm - Updating information and checking young people’s status information on their records


Logging all the interventions for the day and then checking all records to ensure all information on the record is accurate and up to date.


End of day


Concerned regarding some ongoing issues with a particular young person that day and make a mental note to keep on top of that situation as much as possible and keep other professionals informed at all times.


Disappointed at a young person’s apprenticeship not working out, but console myself with the fact that he tried and was prepared to start again and will learn and grow from the experience.


Overall a sense of achievement and generally happy with most of the day’s events, also pretty tired and looking forward to chilling out for the evening!



 

Want to share your day? Send it through to liam.macauley@ycsw.org.uk



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