quote HEE facebook linkedin twitter bracketDetail search file-download keyboard-arrow-down keyboard-arrow-right close event-note

You are here

Nikki Greenwood

Nikki Greenwood is a Therapy Support Worker who works with Children with Complex Special Needs.

My job role has dramatically changed over the past 27 years that I have been doing it.  I have adapted my skills and knowledge as the service provision has changed and progressed.

I currently work within a therapy team of different disciplines – occupational therapy, physiotherapy and speech and language therapy. Through this multi-agency approach I am learning skills from individual disciplines and then encompassing these into a play session for children with complex special needs.

I was attracted to the role of a support worker because of the ability to support a child’s developmental journey and their parents. Daily, I play an integral part with Multi Discipline Team (MDT) assessment, explaining processes of assessment to parents prior to attending the MDT, and the gathering of information. Empowering parents to play a part in their child’s therapy intervention by asking what they would like support with as well for their child. I also plan activities that can be replicated at home or adapting therapy programmes to enable parents to achieve/work towards. In my role I also liaise with other agents such as nurseries and childminders and sharing my knowledge and skills to support a child with additional needs to have the best experience in all settings. Empowering nursery workers to include the children in a mainstream setting as much as possible and not make them feel isolated.

I have been fortunate over many years to have worked alongside many therapists with a wealth of knowledge. This has enabled me to have on the job training. In the early years of my employment, I was fortunate to have access to courses and training around all areas of development. I feel it is important to maintain a high level of understanding of new techniques that are available so that I can then share them with the families that I work with alongside the therapy team.

My proudest moment: Many years ago, I was fortunate to work with a child that was completely blind due to a non-accidental injury as a baby. It was a steep learning curve for me, but I was able to follow the child’s assessment with outside agencies to determine a positive outcome for her carers and her.  At school age the child was offered a place in a special school that was not appropriate for blind children and her carers felt that this would not support her developmental needs.  I was asked to testify at a tribunal to support her to be accepted at a school for visually impaired children that was out of area.  As I had worked closely with the child and her carers my testimony was able to express concerns and recommendations that would best support her development in this alternative school.  Following my testimony, the court ruled that the child would be best placed at the school for visually impaired children as this would best support her needs for now and the future.  This was such an amazing moment that I had made a positive impact on a child’s life that would give her the best experiences for the rest of her childhood.

Support workers are a huge asset to therapy teams. You are able to learn a variety of skills as you support many disciplines at one time. Families that I have worked with have appreciated my knowledge and support as I have the ability to look at all areas of a child’s development. You also get the opportunity to support other agencies that may not have the knowledge or expertise.