Social worker hailed ‘outstanding role model’

editorial image

The success of a social worker from Rugby who won two top prizes at the Social Worker of the Year Awards has been recognised at an event held at the Houses of Parliament.

Patricia Fifield was described as “a real asset to the profession” when she was named Adult Social Worker of the Year and Overall Social Worker of the Year at the awards in November

To celebrate her achievement and help officially launch the 2014 awards, Patricia was last week invited to meet the minister of state for care and support, Norman Lamb MP, at an exclusive reception at the House of Commons. Also present was Rugby’s MP Mark Pawsey.

“The parliamentary reception was a really great day,” said Patricia, who works for Warwickshire County Council. “It’s been nice to meet the minister and hear from him and I really enjoyed meeting my local MP.”

Patricia has spent more than 41 years as a frontline social worker, far above the average length of time people spend in the profession, and currently works for the county council’s team dedicated to looking after the needs of older people and adults with physical disabilities.

She won her two awards after impressing the judges for having “heaps of passion and a fire in her belly”. One judge said she was “an outstanding role model”. Another said she was “an inspiration to all of us”.

The judging panel also commended her ability to embrace change over the years and how she has continuously conducted herself as a social care champion – advocating the rights of her clients to control their lives as experts in their own care, and campaigning for their social justice and empowerment.

Patricia added: “Winning the awards was lovely.

“It’s nice to have this sort of recognition and it’s been a big boost for the team and for Warwickshire too.”

Mr Lamb said: “It’s so important we celebrate great social work – it’s one of our most important public services. There are some amazing people in this field of work.”