Social Care Leader - ACTS – Temporary (Specified Purpose to cover Maternity Leave)

Ballyowen, Palmerstown, Dublin 20
 Salary:  See Description for Details
Other   Maternity Leave Cover
Closing Date: 06/04/2021 Closing Time: 12:00
Recruitment start: 18/03/2021


Job Summary

The Child and Family Agency was established on 1st January 2014 and is responsible for improving wellbeing and outcomes for children. It represents the most comprehensive reform of services for the development, welfare and protection of children and the support of families ever undertaken in Ireland. It is an ambitious move which brings together some 4,000 staff who were previously employed within Children and Family Services of the Health Service Executive, the National Educational Welfare Board and the Family Support Agency.


The Child and Family Agency has responsibility for the following range of services:

  • Child Welfare and Protection Services, including family support services
  • Family Resource Centres and associated national programmes
  • Early years (pre-school) Inspection Services
  • Educational Welfare responsibilities including School completion programmes and Home School Liaison
  • Domestic, sexual and gender based violence services
  • Services related to the psychological welfare of children


Further information is available on www.tusla.ie

The Assessment, Consultation and Therapy Services (ACTS) is a multi-disciplinary therapeutic service which has been established to provide assessment, consultation and therapeutic interventions to young people who have high risk behaviours associated with complex clinical needs.  ACTS interventions will be provided in a timely and responsive manner with a focus on improving outcomes for young people and their families.


ACTS is a specialised service which offers multidisciplinary assessment and time specific interventions. ACTS supports other professionals in their on-going work with young people and their families. ACTS provides:

  • Therapeutic services to young people placed in the national Special Care Units and the Oberstown Children Detention Campus.
  • Assessment, consultation and focused therapeutic interventions for children living in the community who are at risk of placement in special care or detention.


Job Objectives

The Social Care Leader (SCL) is part of the regional multidisciplinary team who holds a caseload under the line management of a Clinical Team Manager.

The post holder will provide therapeutic interventions and supports to young people and their families across various care settings.  The post holder will, in collaboration with their multidisciplinary colleagues, provide evidence based interventions to clients. 


The Social Care Leader will;

  • Identify presenting strengths and needs of client using various assessment frameworks.  This includes but is not limited to developmental, attachment, trauma, bio psycho social, strengths & difficulties, risk management frameworks.
  • Contribute to an informed formulation as required pertaining to the presenting clinical and therapeutic needs of the child in order to inform direct therapeutic work.  
  • Provide specific targeted and ongoing therapeutic interventions to address presenting risk and needs of clients. 
  • Establish a therapeutic relationship with clients and complete direct therapeutic work.
  • Work from a children’s rights model, providing advocacy and empowerment. 
  • Show an ability to use a solution focussed approach.
  • Conduct risk assessments as required and support risk management plans of internal and external agency partners.
  • Collaborate with internal and external service provision partners to address the presenting needs of clients.
  • Share clinical responsibility for direct therapeutic work with clients in line with clinical governance structures of the ACTS service.
  • Uphold and implement the views of young people where possible and clinically appropriate.
  • Use one’s own initiative to complete tasks.
  • Work as part of a multi-disciplinary team in ACTS.
  • Liaise with social work departments, CAMHS, schools, general practitioners, primary health care staff, statutory/voluntary groups and other appropriate personnel.
  • Participate as a member of the ACT team in service provision, meetings, case conferences and team building.
  • Contribute to the development and implementation of information sharing, protocols, audit systems, referral pathways, and individual therapeutic plans.
  • Develop and maintain close liaison with team members, and specialist services to ensure an integrated service for clients.
  • Support models of best evidence based practice.
  • Participate in ongoing monitoring, audit and evaluation of service.
  • Participate in the development of new initiatives.
  • Show capacity and ability to work autonomously with due regard to governance of the service.
  • Participate in professional meetings, such as child in care review, strategy meeting, professional meetings, clinical meetings in special care and detention.
  • Contribute to / Provide therapeutic and clinical reports for other professional agencies as required (court, child care review, strategy meetings).
  • Plan and participate in clinical and therapeutic psycho education groups for external agency partners in line with sound evidence base, knowledge and understanding of the child.
  • Undertake therapeutic family work as required and clinically necessary.
  • Develop contacts with relevant key people and groups in local communities, schools, parent groups, youth groups etc. as appropriate.
  • Take responsibility for communicating on behalf of the ACTS team in various arenas e.g. Child in Care Reviews, professionals’ meetings, legal proceedings etc.
  • Take responsibility for planning and delivering individual, family, group and systemic inventions.
  • Ensure anti-discriminatory practice and cultural competence at individual and service levels.
  • Ensure practice is in line with the Tusla Participation Strategy.
  • Promote a culture that values diversity and respect in the workplace.
  • Keep the Principal Social Worker fully informed and up-to-date on all significant matters.
  • Take direction from the Principal Social Worker, Clinical Team Manager or the ACTS National Manager.
  • Take an active role in an appropriate level of planned professional supervision, in accordance with the local/national Supervision Policy.
  • Engage in reflective practice.


Education & Training

The Social Care Leader will:

  • Maintain standards of practice and levels of professional knowledge by participating in continuous professional development initiatives and attendance at courses as appropriate.
  • Engage in career and professional development planning collaboration with the Principal Social Worker.
  • Keep up to date with advances in Social Care research, and on-going review and evaluation of literature relevant to the assigned area.
  • Keep abreast of developments in national policies and strategies and international best practice.
  • Keep up to date with organisational developments within the Irish Health Service.
  • Actively disseminate specialist knowledge to existing social care staff and other team members.
  • Provide placements for students with appropriate supervision.
  • Provide guidance and supervision to social care students and relevant others.
  • Provide a mentoring role to other workers as required.
  •  In collaboration with the Principal Social Worker, contribute to the development, provision and implementation of mentoring and individualised training programmes for social care staff.
  • Act as a resource by participating in the induction, education and training of Social Care colleagues, other health professionals and service user groups as required.
  • Foster an understanding of the role and contribution of social care by providing professional consultation and education to other members of the service.


Health & Safety

The Social Care Leader will:

  • Comply with and contribute to the development of policies, procedures, guidelines and safe professional practice and adhere to relevant legislation, regulations and standards.


The Social Care Leader will:

  • Maintain a high standard of documentation, including service user files in accordance with local guidelines and the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act and the Data Protection ACTS, GDPR.
  • Maintain accurate up to date records and files, and submit activity data as required.
  • Write accurate, clear, concise and purposeful reports.
  • Ensure the maintenance of service user and data confidentiality.
  • Contribute to the development and implementation of information sharing protocols and audit systems.
  • Contribute to policy development, performance monitoring and budgetary control of service in conjunction with the Principal Social Worker.
  • Contribute to service developments by monitoring and evaluating emerging needs and trends in consultation with team members, Clinical Team Manager and the Principal Social Worker.
  • Collaborate with the Principal Social Worker and Clinical Team Manager in developing the role of the Social Care Leader and the service e.g. through planning, audit, production of standards, continuing education, quality improvement initiatives and research.
  • Assist in ensuring that the social care service makes the most efficient and effective use of developments in IT.
  • Have a working knowledge of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) Standards as they apply to the role.
  • To support, promote and actively participate in sustainable energy, water and waste initiatives to create a more sustainable, low carbon and efficient health service.

The above Job Description is not intended to be a comprehensive list of all duties involved and consequently, the post holder may be required to perform other duties as appropriate to the post which may be assigned to him/her from time to time and to contribute to the development of the post while in office. 

Skills Required

Candidates must, on the closing date have the following:

1. Be currently in employment with Tusla, Child and Family Agency


2. Ordinary Bachelor's Degree in Childcare awarded by a recognised body (Level 7 on the National Framework of Qualifications) or the National Diploma in Childcare awarded by HETAC / DIT.


i) Ordinary Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Social Care Studies awarded by a recognised body (Level 7 on the National Framework of Qualifications) or the National Diploma in Applied Social Care Studies awarded by HETAC / DIT.


ii) Ordinary Bachelor’s Degree in Social Care awarded by a recognised body (Level 7 on the National Framework of Qualifications) or the Diploma in Social Care awarded by HETAC / DIT.


iii) Diploma in Applied Social Studies / Social Care from DIT.


iv) Ordinary Bachelor's Degree in Social Care Practice awarded by a recognised body (Level 7 on the National Framework of Qualifications).


v) Ordinary Bachelor's Degree in Applied Social Studies (Disabilities) awarded by a recognised body (Level 7 on the National Framework of Qualifications) or the National Diploma in Applied Social Studies (Disabilities), The Open Training College (HETAC Accredited).


vi) an equivalent social care qualification from another jurisdiction.


3. a suitable standard of professional attainments.


4. the requisite knowledge and ability (including a high standard of suitability and ability) for the proper discharge of the duties of office.


5. have a minimum of three years’ experience of working in a Children & Families Service or other relevant environment with a similarly challenging client group. 


6. Experience working therapeutically with a young person with a complex trauma history.


7. the requisite knowledge and ability (including a high standard of suitability and ability) for the proper discharge of the duties of office.


A candidate for and any person holding the office must be fully competent and capable of undertaking the duties attached to the office and be in a state of health such as would indicate a reasonable prospect of ability to render regular and efficient service.


Each candidate for and any person holding the office must be of good character.

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