The 2018 Social Worker of the Year awards took place in London on Friday 30th November. Entries for this year's awards open in April 2019. #SWA18

Jennifer Staude, Westminster City Council / Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust

Adult Social Worker of the Year



Jennifer Staude stood out to the judges as a truly inspirational practitioner who has shaped the role of social work within an integrated health and social care service.


Jennifer trained in Australia but came to London to practise four years ago, taking up a senior post at Charing Cross Hospital’s neuro-rehabilitation unit. Here she works on a single, complex ward supporting people with acquired brain injury - both during their stay for rehabilitation and following discharge, as they readjust to life back in the community.


Jennifer is the first social worker to hold this post and her colleagues say she has shown the service “how invaluable social work is to excellent care”. She has developed her complex care planning role to meet a wide range of social need and has worked extensively to ensure the unit is well-equipped to identify and support key areas of social work practice, including mental capacity, safeguarding, and substance misuse.


Jennifer is a tenacious social worker and was praised for always fighting for the best outcomes for her clients, especially at a time of severe budget cuts. Against all odds, she has enabled a huge number of people to retain their independence in the community.


What was said about Jennifer:


Lyn Romeo, Chief Social Worker for Adults: “This social worker exemplifies what is required of social workers today! She is an inspiration and having shaped and developed this social work service as the first one to hold the post, has won the confidence of the other professionals and most importantly service users! Brilliant.”


Caroline Waugh, Think Local Act Personal: “Jen shows the importance of community inclusion and positivism when working with this group of people. I should know, I am the survivor of a Traumatic Brain Injury.”


Service user feedback: “I’ve been in UK 11 years and I’ve heard stories from other friends who haven’t had much help from social workers. But with me every time, I had the opposite experience. I learned a lot from my social worker. Now I can do more things, I can understand better and I’ve learned the right questions to ask.”


Sarah Daniels, Lead Therapist – Neurorehabilitation, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust: “Jen is a dedicated and committed social worker, and an integral member of our specialist neuro-rehabilitation multi-disciplinary team. She has a warm, collaborative approach and an unrelenting commitment to representing the interests of every one of her clients.”



  • Caroline Waugh, Think Local Act Personal
  • Lyn Romeo, Chief Social Worker for Adults
  • Sally Percival, Think Local Act Personal
  • Samantha Keith, Team of the Year, Adult Services Award Winner 2017
  • Vidhya Biju, Adult and Overall Social Worker of the Year 2017



  • Dan Morton, London Borough of Hillingdon
  • Jennifer Staude, Westminster City Council / Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Jess Adams, Gloucestershire County Council - SILVER AWARD WINNER
  • Jo Doughty, Gloucestershire County Council
  • Louise Redsull, Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
  • Lucy Hunt, Devon County Council
  • Steve Foster, Hampshire County Council