Petra Heighway

Petra is a Social Worker, Nottinghamshire County Council and was nominated by Claire McDougall.

Petra Heighway
Petra Heighway, Social Worker

Petra is innovative, person centred and focused on supporting each person as an individual. She will go the extra mile with every person she works with. She is a beacon for direct payments and finding services that meet individual needs. Petra is very focused on meeting cultural needs and will ensure she considers the person’s values and priorities in her assessments. Petra is an excellent advocate for people and will fight to ensure their views are heard and taken account of. She will do this in a supportive and non-threatening way to other professionals and she has a way of talking people around to ensuring the person always sits at the centre of their decisions. Petra is extremely calm and organised and this reflects in her work and in the praise and thanks that she gets from the people she is working with and their families.

Petra would not ‘blow her own trumpet’, but I know that she gets many messages of thanks from families. It would be fantastic for her to get acknowledged as an amazing social worker as she is unassuming in her work and doesn’t realise the amazing impact she has on all of those she works with. Petra will always find time to support her colleagues and will never see colleagues struggling with a situation without offering support and advice. However, she is unaware of the calming effect that she has on those around her and of the confidence that she passes onto people for them to do their work well.

Petra is very honest and will engage in some difficult and challenging conversations during her supervision sessions, where she is challenged to consider her own values and beliefs and how these impact on others. Petra has recently completed her Approved Mental Health Practitioner training. She will acknowledge that she found this challenging at times and it made her consider how she works and how she communicates. However, Petra remained true to herself and continued to be thoughtful in her assessments and tried to slow the assessments down to a speed that the person could understand. This is immensely challenging when faced with a Mental Health Act assessment in difficult circumstances with busy doctors. However, she remained person centred and would not allow the assessment to be rushed to the detriment of the individual.

Petra is unaware of the experience she holds and the calmness that projects from her. She is an amazing social worker and works above and beyond in the role to maintain excellent practice. She always strives to do her best and she will constructively challenge those around her to do their best too. She will input into discussions within the team to make colleagues think about their own values and beliefs and to consider how these impact on our work. She is an excellent role model and I am extremely proud to have her in my team. Petra will be a fantastic manager in the future where she can continue to support those around her, getting people to reflect on their practice and working in consolidation with other professionals.