Sapphire Independent Housing has been approved by the London Metropolitan University, the University of Hertfordshire and Middlesex University to take Social Worker students. These students generally come to Sapphire Independet Housing to complete their first or second placement.
A designated Sapphire Independent Housing staff member trained in mentoring supervises their time within the scheme. During the placement students receive induction and guidance in dealing with vulnerable clients as well as learning many other aspects of service delivery within a hostel environment.
So far this has proved to be a positive experience for Sapphire Independent Housing and the three colleges currently involved and we are planning to expand the arrangement with other institutions in the future.
Elizabeth's student placement experience
I am currently a student at Middlesex University, studying for a Social Work Masters of Arts (MA). My work placement with Sapphire Independent Housing (SIH) Recovery Service started in January this year.
As a result of my time with the Recovery Service and Conway House I now have a better understanding of ‘multi-agency work’. I have experienced first-hand working alongside Housing Options, Job Centre Plus and Camden Aftercare, in relation to benefits, drug and alcohol services, which are necessary for my professional development as a social worker.
My placement has also given me the opportunity to improve on skills such as listening, empathy and providing support to service users. My time with SIH has enabled me to expand my knowledge on policies and legislation relevant to the service. This is important for my development as a social worker as we are expected to know relevant legislation and I believe it is good practice for me to learn about the changes in law and how they may affect the service–users.
The Recovery Service and Conway House teams are brilliant and have been a great support to me. They have helped me to understand the way the organisation works and ensured I have been able to observe key work sessions, interviews and review meetings. I have also visited other hostels within SIH to experience how the service is delivered across the Association.
My placement ends in mid may. I have met some amazing people and learnt so much. I know when I qualify I will be able to take what I have learnt from my time with SIH's Recovery Project and put it into practice. Thank you to everyone for you all your help and support.