WillisPalmer is continuing to provide our expert social work and psychological services during lockdown. We are utilising technology alongside safe working practices in line with government guidance to enable us to continue supporting vulnerable children and families.

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Special Projects

High Quality Special Projects

Whether you are looking for an audit, a review of existing performance or you need help to develop a new service, we can assist. We have a large group of suitable consultants with specific expertise in a range of disciplines for both social work and psychological services. We can also provide practitioners to cover for vacancies on short-term assignments or when demand requires it.

Pre-Inspection Audit Service

Most local authorities will have conducted their own diagnostic through internal quality assurance and auditing programs. WillisPalmer can offer bespoke individual associates or an associate group to accelerate improvements, ensuring they are targeted and prioritised, demonstrating consistent impact and outcome.

Case audits

For example, children in need cases to determine the prevalence and quality of chronologies, genograms, case recording, plans and reviews. Generally, it is recommended that any auditing activity is restricted to an agreed sample size across teams, services and localities to ascertain if improvements should be targeted at particular teams or if the practice shortfalls are more systemic and service wide.

Case auditing activity will always include a semi- structured discussion with the allocated Social Worker to assess their knowledge and understanding of the case and whether case recording reflects the quality of their professional practice.

Identification of key areas requiring improvement

This will either be elicited from existing local authority audit work or comprise an amalgam of WillisPalmer auditing and local authority quality assurance and performance management information. The areas requiring improvement will be carefully identified, featuring the number of cases where shortfalls have been identified.

Mentoring Programs

WillisPalmer has an established mentoring service which has been commissioned by local authorities. This program promotes authoritative social work practice for both Social Workers and front line managers, and is particularly targeted for children and young people at risk.

This program facilitates exposure to a team of highly experienced WillisPalmer associates who will undertake prescribed mentoring work with Social Workers, expanding the range of theories and perspectives relating to their work with children and families at risk, including for example, attachment theory, systemic family therapy, case formulation and risk analysis. This will result in improved professional judgement and decision making for both Social Workers and first line managers. Further information regarding the mentoring program can be found here

For more detailed information about our special projects or commissioning a mentoring program click here

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Knowledge & Resources

Keep abreast of the latest news in the children's services sector.

Progress in production of code for civil claimants of child sexual abuse


Work is underway for a code to be produced for the benefit of claimants who are bringing civil claims for child sexual abuse.

In its Accountability and Reparations Inquiry , the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse recommended that The International Underwriting Association of London should take the lead in the production of a code [...]

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Bill introduced to see all crimes committed by under-18s dealt with in youth courts


A bill has been introduced to Parliament which would ensure that all children are dealt with by the youth courts rather than the adult courts if the alleged crime is carried out before the child reaches 18.

Rob Butler, former magistrate in both adult and youth courts, a member of the Youth Justice Board, a non-executive [...]

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Rise in parental drug and alcohol misuse since first lockdown


The NSPCC has seen a rapid increase in contacts from members of the public that children are being put at risk as a result of parental drug and alcohol misuse.

Since April 2020, the number of people contacting the children’s charity with concerns about drug and alcohol misuse among parents has risen by 66%. Between January [...]

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