“I always wanted to work with people, says Beth when I ask her about the journey that has led to her being a Senior Social Worker in the WBAS Recruitment and Assessment Team.

“It was more people with learning difficulties, she continues.

“I did some voluntary work as a teenager and teaching was calling me, particularly with children who have learning difficulties.  I’ve always loved working with young people.

“This is what opened my eyes to the world of social work, seeing the relationships workers had with some children.

“Following some travelling around and finding myself a bit I came back to Cardiff and got a job with adults with learning difficulties.”


 Stepping into social work and adoption

 “A trainee social work job arose, I think I did the last diploma before it was changed to a degree. I then trained and worked frontline for 4 years.

“This can be quite demanding and when opportunities to work in the local authority adoption arose I grabbed at the opportunity!”

“It’s difficult to describe a typical day, says Beth “as things can often change quite quickly with your plan for the day going out of the window.

“You can have your set plan for the day but you will often have to drop things to pick other things up.

“You can take on a lot of people’s emotions which can weigh quite heavily. Lots of conversations are needed with colleagues.

“Lots of offloading. We are each other’s support networks in the service really. Humour is a big part of it.”

“It’s also important to recognise when someone needs a bit of extra support and reach out to them.


The theme this year of World Social Work Day emphasises the need for innovative, community-led approaches – this can be seen reflected across the spectrum of work at WBAS. From the therapeutic and relationship based support we offer families, to the community offered at our events such as support groups and family parties, to the cross-service approach we use to secure the best possibilities for children and families.

“You are shaping a child’s life with your decisions and actions in terms of matches and approvals, continues Beth, “that can be a lot to deal with if it goes wrong.

“The hours can sometimes be long, sometimes you have to dig deep and it’s not quite a normal 9 – 5.  The people and the results make it all worth it though.”

Beth has worked in social work for many years now and has had many experiences.

“I still remember my first adopter assessment and the emotion felt when they were approved at panel. The enormity of my role in this family’s joy at being told they could become parents to an adopted child stays with me to this day.

Beth is also an adopter herself having recently going through the adoption process, so has total empathy for those who are currently being assessed.

“Trust your social worker, she says.

“You can sometimes feel a little powerless, the feeling of your fate being in someone else’s hands.

“I had a match with a child that broke down and found it quite tough.

“But it all happened for a reason and I wouldn’t have my little girl now if that previous match hadn’t failed.

“I love being my little-ones Mum.

“Once you get to the place that I am at now, you feel that it is all worth it. You are more equipped to look back and deal with the challenges and adversity and just think – yeah I’ve done it!”


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