Multi-Agency Working

Assignment (2000 words)    (70% of final mark)

 Demonstrate a critical understanding of the impact of organisational context on social work and inter-professional work

• Demonstrate a critical understanding of the importance of multi-agency working in relation to Social Work practice

• Demonstrate an understanding of how teams and organisations can promote anti-oppressive and anti-discriminatory

 Choose an agency that allows you to address all aspects of the assignment. In most cases, this will be your shadowing agency – but it does not have to be if, for example, you have not yet completed your shadowing. It is your chance to explore in greater depth issues raised in the presentation and to use material you researched that could not be included in the group presentation. Its fine to re-use diagrams from presentation – as ever beware of reusing text as could be picked up on Turnitin if others do so. Briefly highlight the legislation that guides the agency you are discussing.

• The agency in context. You need to put the agency in context by demonstrating how the agency you are discussing fits into the multi-agency network. Which other agencies is it linked to? Consider using a web diagram to depict this. Define statutory and non-statutory agencies and identify statutory and non-statutory agencies the agency works with – and consider the advantages of statutory and non-statutory collaboration – e.g. service users are more willing to engage with non-statutory agencies. How effectively does it link to other agencies – consider culture/power differences – again, this might link to statutory and non-statutory agencies.

• Service users – consider which service users (communities) are served by the different teams in the agency. Are they voluntary or involuntary – provide a definition of these different types of service users. How well does the agency meet the diverse needs of service users – especially those with “protected characteristics”. What disadvantage do the service users served by agency face. Illustrate with, for example, Thompson’s PCS model, ideas around Social Exclusion, stigma, Social and Medical models of Disability. Consider some of their duties under the Equality Act and Human Rights Act.  Have a look at this website:

•Examine this in relation to one of two aspects of diversity

• What might be the benefits and advantages of working collaboratively in this organisation and with other organisations?

•Consider if your agency engages in inter professional or multi agency working.

•Set the context with general discussion around how the importance of multi agency working has been recognised over time (e.g. using Kate Wilson chapter and Karin Crawford) and the legislation and serious case reviews that has driven it – drawing on serious case reviews that are relevant to your agency

•Discuss the overall benefits of multi agency working – e.g. how it improves delivery  of service for service users – drawing on what has been written about this – e.g. not one professional being able to meet all service users needs – different professionals delivering according to their expertise

•Having discussed the context generally drawing on authors and research – then apply it to the agency you are analysing and the service users it serves – and consider the benefits to service users for this particular agency of collaborative working.

•How does multi-agency working link to HCPC codes and Chief SW Knowledge and Skills statements – remember the first lecture

•Consider how Serious Case Reviews shed light on the way the agency you are focussing on works and previous mistakes made / lessons learned.

•Introduction to outline what you are covering (200 words)

•Agency in context – web diagram – discussion of statutory and non statutory agencies that link to chosen agency – advantages of stat and non stat agencies – which agencies have strong and weak links and why – culture differences etc (400 words)

•The service users served by the agency – how well might the agency meet the needs of service users with protected characteristics under the Equality Act. How might the agency be oppressive or empowering ? Consider one or two groups with protected characteristics (500 words)

•Discussion of the benefits of multi-agency working. What promotes it? What hinders it? How have lessons from Serious case reviews informed the development of multi-agency working in relation to your chosen agency? (700 words)

•Conclusion – identify a learning point from the assignment in relation to multi-agency working that you will take into your placement ad practice beyond that (200)

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