Rebecca McClure – ASYE Hospital Social Work Team – Barnsley
What attracted you to social work
I worked as a nurse auxiliary and loved the listening to and talking with patients, more than the medical side. So I went to University and did a degree in Counselling, however this did not lead to anything when degree finished. I then decided to go to a Huddersfield University’s open day and it was there I talked to the Social Work department and from that decided to study Social Work.
I qualified in July 2016 and got a temporary contract with Doncaster Royal Infirmary for 8 weeks, but was looking for a full time post so applied for a social work post with Barnsley. My interview went really, and I really liked the team, so I accepted my ASYE post here even though Doncaster then offered me a permanent post as well.
What team do you work in?
I started off in the Customer Access Team – taking referrals from housing, self referral, district officers etc. Work was very busy and fast, with not much long-term work. Halfway through my ASYE year restructuring took place and the customer access team was disbanded. I was allowed to choose where i wanted to work and chose the hospital team.
My new team is working within the hospital setting with mostly elderly service users. I found that my previous role as a nursing auxiliary has really helped in this new post as I have a greater understanding of how the hospital works and the different professional roles. Although the work can be high pressured I really enjoy it.
Both teams have been very supportive and took me out on visits with them until my confidence and knowledge increased.
What support have you had as an ASYE?
I started my ASYE with weekly supervision with my ASYE supervisor Karen Turner, as time progressed and I became more confident these supervisions became less frequent though remained regular. I also have a line manager who is an Advanced Health Practitioner in the Hospital team, who goes through all my cases with me and I also have a team manager. Karen has remained my ASYE supervisor through the change of teams.
Karen gave me a list of training, from Barnsley’s core offer, that she recommended I undertake. I was able to attend some of these but as I progressed in the ASYE year my caseload got bigger and I found there was less time to undertake all the training.
I have also has been part of a few peer group meetings – facilitated by Cora Beard – which included other ASYEs and students. These groups consisted of going through each PCF and KSS and then a discussion on how they could evidence each one. It was really helpful to meet other ASYEs and we were able to discuss our portfolios and help each other.
I also get a day of study leave every 2 weeks and it is during this time I work on my ASYE portfolio.