Sara Crews, a social worker, shares her story about her move from the USA. Read her interview below:
1. When did you move to the UK and how are you finding life in the UK so far?
I moved to Surrey at the beginning of September this year. I can officially say I’ve been living here for a month! I am enjoying life here so far. It has been easy to find information that I need as well as get around. It is really nice how connected the UK is with everything. Surrey, where I am living, does not have the fast pace of London, which is really good. The town, Redhill, goes at a really nice pace and is very residential, making it a nice place to walk around.
2. Have you found professional practices here to be different to back home?
So far there are differences in the social work practice model used compared to client engagement or the questions asked. I am still learning the model and have yet to put it into practice so, I’m sure I will learn more about similarities and differences within the next few months.
3. Why did you decide to move to the UK?
I have always had the childhood fantasy of moving here but, never thought it would happen! Last fall, I got to spend a month in the UK, when I had lots of fun. When I got home, I was determined to come back not just for a vacation! That led to me finding out about HCL Social Care and having their wonderful help in moving to the UK.
4. Did you encounter any challenges during your relocation?
No, I have been very lucky actually. There has been a delay in me getting my National Insurance number as I didn’t find the information on their website very clear. For example, it says that the number can be printed on the back of your biometric card, which was not true in my case. It wasn’t until after being here for two weeks and beginning work soon that I learned I had to apply for it. Apart from that, deciding what to pack before I came was pretty stressful.
5. Would you advise other American social workers to come and work here?
I would. This is an opportunity of a life time! In America, we (social workers) sometimes feel we are very limited in what we want to do; especially if you want to be more specific, you have to go on to get your master’s degree in social work. Then, in looking to do social work abroad, we quickly dismiss it as we think (and sometimes see) that international companies only want social workers with master’s degrees. Well, don’t lose hope! If you are willing to be patient, you will find a way to practise social work abroad no matter where in the world or the level of your degree!
Interested in working in the UK?
Here at HCL Social Care, we understand moving to a new country can be challenging. We support candidates, like Sara, every step of the way. We have helped hundreds of foreign social workers find their dream permanent roles in the UK. You can be next. Upload your CV or give us a call on +4420 7861 8777 (extension 3).