A Cornwall College Camborne student has recently presented at an annual Safeguarding conference, hosted at Cornwall College St Austell in partnership with Plymouth University.
The conference was held at the Keay Theatre at the St Austell campus and was attended by expert speakers, safeguarding tutors and students from numerous courses. Industry experts took to the stage to discuss up to date policy, research and practice issues on the theme of safeguarding children and working with families.
Guest speakers included Professor Pamela Trevithick, visiting from Buckinghamshire New University, whose expertise and research are primarily in communication, groupwork and in the use of psychological approaches in social work. Pamela is the author of the bestselling text "Social Work Skills: A Practice Handbook", which has been translated into five other languages. A further prestigious speaker at the conference was Anthony Douglas CBE who is the chief executive of CAFCASS (Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) which supports over 100,000 children in public and private law cases every year. Anthony was awarded a CBE by The Queen in 2008 for services to family justice and adoption.
Presenting alongside these industry experts was Polly Soper, a BSc Social Work student at Cornwall College. Polly gave a 25 minute speech about how important the understanding of safeguarding is when studying a social work degree. Talking about presenting in front of a large number of experts, Polly said: "Safeguarding children is a complex and difficult task, it is therefore important that we make the most of the tools available to us. Theory and research provides us with structure, knowledge and the forum for debating different ideas. I hope that the conference will grow so that practice ideas can continue to be shared in the future."
Tom Hawkins, Cornwall College lecturer and organiser of the conference, said: "The conference has gone really well and Polly did a wonderful job giving her speech in front of a large audience, she represented the College very well. The conference has been a very busy, successful and informative event this year."
Dave Linnell, Principal of Cornwall College, said: "This was a great event that was well organised and executed by all involved. Having one of our own social work students speak at the conference was a great opportunity for her to network and learn from other industry experts."