The University of Kentucky College of Social Work partnered with the Department of Community Based Services (DCBS) to provide DBCS workers a day to take time for self-care in their busy schedules.
The Southern Blue Taking Care of You Gathering took place on November 8th and 9th at Immanuel Baptist Church. Dr. Jay Miller, College of Social Work Dean, spoke on the importance of self-care on both days of the event, in addition to the CoSW providing chair massages to workers, leading attendees through a virtual reality self-care experiences, and providing complementary Self-Care Lab yoga mats and UK CoSW water bottles.
Making self-care a priority can be instrumental in improving the mental, physical, and emotional health at work and ultimately lead to improved client outcomes. There are many ways to define self-care, but ultimately it is the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health.
“Especially being a social worker, a lot of people are relying on you to help them and provide resources to them. It’s so important that you do the same for yourself because if you’re not taking care of yourself like we learned from Dean Miller, then we can’t help the families that need us the most,” said Allie Chapman, a social worker in Jessamine County and UK College of Social Work graduate.
Many social workers, including Chapman, are UK College of Social Work CW Prep (formerly known as PCWCP) alumni who have now moved on to the workforce, working to better the Commonwealth every day.
At the recent event held by DCBS, the CoSW team was able to reconnect with former students of the program and ask them about how CW PREP helped them succeed, as well as what it is they enjoy about working in social work.
“My favorite thing about working for DCBS is honestly the camaraderie on my team, knowing that I’m in the office with a bunch of people with the same mission as me and we all really care for each other. We care to see each other succeed and we’re always there to help each other out,” said Delilah Evans, former CW Prep student.
Being mindful of one’s wellness, especially as a social worker, is a crucial aspect of daily life. Practicing self-care enhances life in and out of the office and improves client outcomes. The best day to start self-care was yesterday, but today will do just fine.