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Meet the team – Ilfa Duale, family support worker

It is time for the latest edition of ‘Meet the team’. This is a regular blog feature where you have the opportunity to get to know a member of our team a little better. Focus Foster Care is one big family and we want you to feel comfortable and at ease when contacting us for the first time. We hope our ‘Meet the team’ posts will help you to get to know everyone at Focus Foster Care on a more personal level and encourage you to find out how you can join our family too. So far our registered manager, social worker, office administrator and supervising social worker have all been under the spotlight. Today it is Ilfa’s turn to introduce herself. Take it away Ilfa..

Meet the Focus Foster Care family support worker

My name is Ilfa and I am the family support worker here at Focus Foster Care. I started working here in July 2018. As a family support worker I work alongside the supervising social workers, supporting foster carers and children/young people in placement on a one to one basis. My role as a family support worker includes carrying out different visits, including unannounced home visits. I am also involved with foster carer training, multi agency meetings, record keeping and completing health and safety assessments.

Focus Foster Care is a great place to work because of the culture and ethics the whole team posses. At Focus, every person is valued and treated with respect, individual’s cultures and backgrounds are recognised. There is a strong sense of equality and diversity in the team.

The agency places high emphasis on team work and all the team members help and support each other. We all share the same mission, we are there to support each other and the team feels like a family.

The thing I love most about working for the Focus Foster Care fostering agency is that the team cares about me as a person and are invested in my professional growth. When I started work for Focus I had no previous experience in fostering, I had only a basic understanding. With the help and support of my manager and team I have been given the opportunity to grow and progress in my career. I work under experienced social workers who act as my mentors, as a result I feel a lot more confident in my job and the decisions and judgements I have to make as part of my role. I love that we all share our ideas, everyone is listened to and we all work together as a team to make ideas a reality. I love being a part of the Focus team and having my voice and ideas listened to.

Fostering gives children the opportunity to grow and develop; positive changes can help these children have a much better quality of life and happier childhoods. Children and young people in foster care come from different backgrounds and experiences, foster carers need to offer children opportunities to develop and learn. With the proper support from foster carers children and young people are able to grow in confidence and achieve more.

Outside of work I enjoy socialising with friends and talking with them about different life experiences. I enjoy sharing all my achievements with my friends and also encouraging them that nothing is impossible when you put the effort in to make change. I also enjoy taking part in leisure activities and going to the gym. As well as socialising I do love to learn more about my role as a family support worker and about my career in fostering.

There is a whole team of people who work at Focus Foster Care and make it the successful independent fostering agency it is today. We hope you enjoyed getting to know our social worker Fiona, be sure to come back to our blog soon to meet the rest of the team.

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