A Day in the Life of a CFAB Caseworker
As an inter-country caseworker at CFAB, my role entails offering advice on our Advice Line to a range of people including local authority professionals and private individuals on matters concerning international child protection. My role also entails managing a caseload relating to international child protection cases originating from the UK or overseas.
A Day On Duty
09:00 – 10:00:
I usually start my mornings at work by checking what items are on my to-do list to follow up on that morning, and get through those tasks. These tasks can range from calling back a social worker from a local authority regarding a previous case or enquiry, to enquiring with an International Social Service (ISS) network partner on a new possible referral from us. On a typical day where I am on main duty for the Advice Line, I will spend the rest of this hour responding to any emails concerning my cases, so that I can focus on duty during the advice line hours.
10:00 – 15:30:
The Advice Line opens from 10:00 so during these hours, I am available to pick up on the Advice Line and advise local authority professionals, NGOs and private individuals on any queries they have that I may be able to assist with. I will also usually be responding to any emails in the duty inbox with enquiries concerning international child protection cases. Calls or emails from UK local authority professionals are usually to enquire about whether CFAB can assist in their cases with an international element. After getting a bit of a background to the case we, on the Advice Line, are able to expand on what services are available to assist with that particular case. Depending on the nature of the case, we will offer services such as a child protection alert overseas, social service checks from overseas, a welfare visit overseas or an overseas assessment.
15:30 – 16:30
The Advice Line closes at 15:30. As the Advice Line can get busy sometimes, I spend an hour or so after it has closed to log enquiries from the phone calls that day. I also follow up on these enquiries by sending out emails to the callers. These emails usually consist of sending referral forms and information on how to make a referral to CFAB for an international child protection case, or signposting to relevant authorities/organisations.
16:30 – 17:00
I usually dedicate the last part of my day catching up on any administrative duties or extra tasks. Our cases are usually allocated on a Wednesday at CFAB, so on a Wednesday or following day, I will spend this time preparing a referral for a new case to send to a partner abroad.
Why I Enjoy My Role and Challenges of My Role
I enjoy the work I do at CFAB as it allows me to do work that I consider important. Although, as a caseworker, I do not work directly with children, I play a role in ensuring their protection and fundamental right to a family life. This is an area I have always had an interest in and something that I find incredibly rewarding! I also enjoy the cross-border aspect of the role that allows me to collaborate with partners internationally on cases. Although, this also presents as a challenge at times as the differences in time zones, and ways of working can sometimes cause delays in the work we do. If you have a child protection inquiry with an international element, caseworkers like myself will be answering the Advice Line to help you as best we can – you might even end up with me on the other end of the line!