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Thursday, 11 January 2018

Engage: West Sussex County Council - Repairing Families from the Bottom Up

Written by The Editorial Team

This is a sponsored article and is brought to you by West Sussex County Council.

At West Sussex County Council we are doing something inspirational, something we are really proud of - creating a brighter future for the children and families we work with. At the heart of our strategic plan is a desire that all children, young people and families will thrive and prosper.

Key to this is recruiting, developing and retaining the most talented social workers. As part of our recruitment activity we are running a breakfast event aimed at recruiting experienced Children’s Social Workers.

We will be joined by Dr Shoshanah Lyons, Clinical Psychologist of Beacon House Therapeutic Services and Trauma Team who has over 15 years’ experience of working with children, families and adults. Dr Lyons is a specialist in complex psychological trauma and has undertaken extensive training in the assessment and treatment of developmental trauma across the lifespan.

In her one hour talk “Repairing Families from the Bottom Up” Dr Lyons will be offering attendees a whirlwind tour of the impact of early trauma on children and families; and how social work can be informed and inspired by trauma and attachment research. Those attending will come away with a greater understanding of the links between adverse childhood experiences and developmental trauma; and will have an opportunity to learn and explore how such knowledge could impact social work practice.

Attendees will discover:

  • The relationship between adverse childhood experiences and child outcomes
  • The seven areas of developmental trauma in children and adults
  • The bottom up approach to healing intergenerational trauma
  • How trauma research can inform good quality, effective and cutting edge social work


Staff from West Sussex County Council Children’s Social Care team will be on hand to talk about what it is like to work in our team and how we use our practice framework which is ‘Signs of Safety’ informed by an attachment and developmental trauma lens. Attendees at this event will be invited to register to stay in touch with the innovative work we are doing alongside hearing about career opportunities here at West Sussex.

When asked why the council was running this event Annie MacIver, Director of Family Operations, said: “I am passionate about ensuring that Social Workers are provided with career development opportunities including learning about how we can mostly effectively engage in therapeutic interventions with children and families. I want to develop a workforce of Social Workers who are highly curious and have an appetite to keep learning. I believe that a learning culture where staff are well trained and supported will keep children safer and hope that this event attracts experienced social workers who want to work in an environment where they will be able to do their best work.”

The event is on Friday 2nd February 2018 from 8am to 11am at West Sussex County Council County, Hall North Park Street, Horsham. RH12 1XH.

Experienced social workers, or those considering returning to the profession, can book on this free event by clicking on this link: