24th June 2022
Resilience, Advocacy and Wellbeing are terms that have come into focus during the past years, and their importance has been accelerated through the Covid-19 Pandemic. Professional practice has moved from team-based peer support to working from home for many, juggling competing personal and professional tasks in times of global crisis. This has impacted on individuals in terms of mental and physical health and staffing pressures have arisen for organisations as a result.
The concept of ‘self-care’ or caring for self has come to the forefront for practitioners across health and social care, alongside with personal and organisational performance. Throughout my years in front-line practice and now in academia, I have been interested in those themes and consider them through a holistic lens, informed by my background as a Social Pedagogue and Social Worker.
I wanted to develop a CPD unit that enabled students to learn about the key concepts and explore tools for wellbeing and resilience whilst not shying away from the issues of stress, trauma and vicarious trauma in practice. I also wanted to consider the impact on performance, whilst discussing how managers, leaders and organisations can support staff to further my own research in the area.
I was very privileged to be able to reach out to colleagues in practice and academia to view RAW from different angles. Together we challenge perceptions of ‘self-care’ and attempt to reclaim the term ‘resilience’ in a positive notion rather than feeding into the neo-liberal consideration that practitioners are to blame for not coping with organisational pressures.
We critically evaluated our personal and professional identities through fascinating discussions; juggling the competing demands of work and life. The challenge to not lose yourself in the process of caring for others is significant. Finding your voice to create an environment where care and compassion are seen as part of service outcomes.
I am so privileged to be part of that journey together with my friends and colleagues:
Rebecca Triggs, BU and Yoga Teacher
Susanne Clarke, BU
Emma Collins, BU
Julia Armstrong, BCP council
Dr Gareth Further, Flinders University, Australia
Louise Downes, BU and Wiltshire Council
Dr Rachel Arnold, BU
Dr Rejoice Chipuriro, BU
Jan Hutt, BU