30 August 2022

Linking theories to practice, Sally reflects on the valuable experience she gained during her social work placement with Life Without Barriers.

A woman with long curly brown hair wearing a yellow shirt is holding an IPad and smiling.

Sally recently completed a Study to a Work placement with the team in South Australia. She now works full-time as a Child and Family Practitioner, at Life Without Barriers. Below is a reflection of Sally's experience.

"I was fortunate enough to have my first social work placement at Life Without Barriers within the Living Arts program. On this placement, I was able to work with individuals as well as groups engaging in art-based and community activities.

"Amongst other things, I was also able to help plan a community engagement event. Whilst this event did not go ahead due to Covid, I found the planning of this very enjoyable, and this was something that really kickstarted my love for this type of social work practice.

"At Life Without Barriers, I was able to apply the knowledge gained from my studies directly to practice. As this was my first placement, I was quite new to working within the field. However, having the support and encouragement of my placement supervisor, as well as the broader team, allowed me to build my confidence and skills as an emerging social worker.

"I really appreciated the opportunity to have individual supervision with my Life Without Barriers Social Work Supervisor."

"During supervision, I was able to link theories to practice, debrief about my experience and receive feedback. As a social work student, I felt comfortable asking questions and seeking clarification and advice. This is because Life Without Barriers has a warm, inclusive, and team-focused environment and a culture that is very welcoming.

"During placement, I was also very appreciative of the continuous professional development and learning opportunities provided by the organisation. In particular, I found learning how to write effective case notes incredibly useful and something I now draw upon in my everyday practice.

"Because my placement was such a positive experience, when I saw a position advertised working within the foster care context at Life Without Barriers – I knew I wanted to apply.

"In my first year out of university working as a qualified Social Worker, I have continued to learn so much. In my current role, I support Foster Carers and children, and I find this incredibly rewarding. I have also been able to work alongside other professionals, including government and other support agencies, which has given me insight and experience into the ways systems can collaborate.

"My placement was such a rich and valuable learning experience, and one that has enabled me to build the knowledge and skills required to become a component and confident social worker."

"I strongly encourage any student who is looking for a placement to consider applying for Life Without Barriers!"

Get a head start on your career through our Study to Work Gateway by completing your studies and student placement while being employed at Life Without Barriers.

We are committed to providing opportunities to students to ensure you receive valuable industry experience in a sector that makes a difference in the lives of communities across Australia.

Life Without Barriers has opportunities in a range of services and with support and advice available from industry experts to help you successfully finalise your studies whilst starting a rewarding career.

Interested? Visit our careers page to view our current roles or email the Organisational Capability team for advice or support.

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