Grow Your Own Social Worker training scheme bears fruit in Somerset

The first three students from a fast track programme to create social workers in Somerset have now graduated.

Kelly Porter, Christine Starmer and Vicki Richards were the first apprentices to complete the Social Work Degree apprenticeship within the Somerset County Council apprenticeship scheme.

The apprenticeship Social Worker course runs over three years and is made up of work experience placements and academic learning based at Yeovil College.

24 staff have taken up the course since its start in October 2019. Kelly, Christine and Vicki are among the first to complete the course – with others expected to follow suit shortly.

Christine Starmer said “The apprenticeship journey has been an interesting, challenging yet rewarding journey. Somerset County Council (SCC) have been supportive throughout with providing time to study, placements, and advice and guidance. I have thoroughly enjoyed the journey, I have learnt and developed so many skills and so much knowledge that I am able to take forward into the next stage of my career of which I am continuing with SCC and within the Family Safeguarding Team. We are now all registered with Social Work England.”

Christine is already in post as a social worker in Somerset County Council’s Children Social Care services (CSC), Kelly is soon to follow into CSC and Vicki has taken a post with Adult Social Care.

Somerset County Council are recruiting more Social Workers through the Social Work Degree apprenticeship, and through the Step Up to Social Work and Frontline programmes.  

Somerset County Council is also continuing its commitment to provision of high quality social workers by recruiting 20 Social Workers from southern Africa.

If you are interested in becoming a Somerset social worker, please check out www.somerset.gov.uk/jobs-and-careers/social-care/

For more information, please contact the press office on 01823 355020 or email press office@somerset.gov.uk