A Reflective Account Of The 30 Day Placement

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A Reflective Account of the 30 Day Placement I was given my first placement in a residential care home for the elderly located next to a busy main road in a small town. Established for over 25 years, the home is owned and run by qualified nurses who specialise in looking after confused, elderly residents. It can accommodate 32 service users for residential care and also provide respite care, day care and dementia care. There are currently 18 full or part time care staff plus domiciliary workers operating on a 12 hour shift system. I was the first student social worker they had ever given a placement to so I felt like a bit of a guinea pig to start with. On questioning the staff it became apparent that they had been wary of my imminent arrival and were unsure of what to make of me. I found out that this was based on the stereotype of the social worker and in the words of one of the carers ‘social workers are trouble makers’. I put them at rest by convincing them that I was there to learn about all aspects of the care home and how it fitted in with all aspects of social care. At first I felt like the carers were putting on a ‘show’ for my benefit but it became apparent very quickly through observations from distance that they were genuine in their roles. Prior to the placement I thought I would be just an extra pair of hands in the care home or that I would be isolated from the day to day routine as the sole student social worker in the home. I managed to overcome this by

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