Cafcass shortlisted for Leadership Excellence awards

Christine Banim, National Service Director, has been nominated for an award at the Guardian Public Service Awards 2018.

Christine has been shortlisted in the Leadership Excellence category, for the work she has done over the last seven years to make Cafcass one of the most consistent and high-performing national services in the country, ensuring vulnerable children across England receive the same consistently good or outstanding level of service, wherever they live and whatever their situation.

Christine is unwavering in her commitment to continuously improving Cafcass. Alongside our CEO, she has transformed Cafcass, growing productivity, performance and quality year on year, as well as leading crucial reform programmes to tackle rising demand. Christine’s strong values and leadership radiate across the organisation ensuring all social work staff understand the high standards she sets and expects.

In 2010 the Public Accounts Committee criticised Cafcass as “not fit for purpose. Too many children were receiving a poor service from us. Since then, Christine has been instrumental in transforming Cafcass so that in February 2018 we were awarded an ‘Outstanding’ rating by Ofsted.

Speaking about her place on the shortlist, Christine said, “I am so pleased that the great work everyone has done in Cafcass over the past seven years is recognised in this shortlist. I don’t see this as a nomination for me as an individual, I think it recognises the excellent leadership throughout Cafcass. No single person can make national changes and I have been supported in all my work by an outstanding team and workforce.”

Anthony Douglas, Cafcass CEO has said of the nomination, “Improving organisations, especially complex national organisations, is a subtle business. One false move or direction can set you back years. It has been a pleasure working with Christine and we have been an effective double act, complementing each other in what we have brought to the essential task of improving Cafcass. She is by far the best senior operational manager it has been my privilege to work with, because she never accepts second best and she combines strong and deep social work values with clinical performance management.”

The Guardian Public Sector awards are in their 14th year and recognise those across the public service sector who champion change, innovation and strong leadership. The winners will be announced in a ceremony on the 27th November.

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