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June 2019Vol. 20, No. 5Podcast Highlights Key Casework Skills for Successful Child Welfare Practice

A Child Welfare Information Gateway podcast explores the skills needed for successful child welfare casework by featuring three former caseworkers who discuss the realities of real-world practice and how they managed their time, energy, and emotions while working with children and families.

The podcast, "Casework: What It Really Takes," seeks to answer the following questions for new and prospective caseworkers:

  • Are you ready for your first day on the job?
  • What are the challenges you will likely encounter, and how can you meet them?

The caseworkers, who are now Information Gateway staff members, discuss the challenges of working with individuals who may have very different perspectives and backgrounds and how to maximize the partnerships needed to serve children and families more effectively. They share tips from their own experience on how to approach families, manage caseloads, maintain professionalism, and develop useful cross-agency partnerships. They also share tips on how supervisors can support new workers. One of the participants emphasizes, "It's okay not to be perfect," while another talks about the importance of taking it "a day at a time."

The podcast is available on the Children's Bureau website at