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'Encourage, influence, grow: Becoming BASW chair could be the best thing you do in social work'

BASW chair Gerry Nosowska reflects on the role and why it's a fantastic opportunity to represent your profession and make a real difference...

BASW Chair: Gerry Nosowska

Social work changes lives - and BASW enables great social work.

BASW’s vision states: “Social work will be a thriving, influential, respected profession, improving lives and upholding people’s rights across the UK.”

It's a joy to have a role where the guiding principles are social work values, and action is grounded in social work skills and knowledge.

Every day I'm part of a network of social workers and allies across the UK, working for a better society where everyone is able to live a life of dignity and hope. Each week is different and brings both learning and growth.

The most rewarding part of the role for me has been the chance to encourage others – members, staff and wider social work – in the amazing work that they are doing. And to speak up for the importance of our profession and support for social workers, who do vital, selfless and tireless work every day.

As BASW chair, you are at the heart of a great organisation. You spend time with inspirational people. You see the impact of the work that BASW does and have a unique opportunity to influence social work.

There are also struggles. BASW takes big decisions, members have a wide range of views, there is always too much to do and to respond to. 

However, over my time as chair, I have seen membership grow, support to social workers develop and BASW move closer to our aspiration of living our values. I work closely with others right across the organisation and have never felt unsupported.

If you are committed to BASW’s vision and ethics, have experience in leadership and chairing, and care deeply about practice, please consider bringing your values and capabilities to this role. It could be the best thing that you do in social work.