Today at One Stop Social, we’re breaking the stereotype and I, a woman and novice driver, am telling an entire community what car they should get. But, before anyone gets up in arms about my inexperience or the misconception that women don’t know about cars, let me point out, I am acting as the megaphone for the whole One Stop Social team in this regard. Why though am I spending my morning talking to you about cars, I hear you ask? The answer is simple: social work revolves around easy transport, and even in a time of such good public transport, so many social workers still rely on their cars daily. After our Directors spent an entire lunchtime discussing how many miles they’d travelled for their practice in the past month, it got us all thinking about what a large role a car plays in the life of a social worker. We practically live in them, travelling to and from home visits, meeting with practice educators, attending training or networking events… And that’s before you even look at our personal lives, where we could be busy with the school run, weekly shops and Saturday rugby matches.
There’s no denying that, however much we may try to reduce our carbon footprint, cars are still very important to a social worker.
But which ones to consider?
Disclaimer: I’m just having a bit of fun here and One Stop Social are by no means endorsing specific brands, cars, etc. Though if any sponsor wants to offer me a free Ferrari, I’ll happily change my tune…
The Eco-Champion – Tesla’s Model S
We’ve all realised that we need to start actively working to fight climate change, so there are now a million and one environmentally friendly cars on the market. However, you can’t think eco-warrior car without your mind immediately going to Tesla. They bring a new approach to driving in the modern era without sacrificing style or gadgets. The Autopilot feature may make you worry about the robot revolution but realistically, this is just a very cool car. It’s built to be not only efficient but safe. So, if you’re a social worker who likes to have a bit of style, but is conscious of your emissions, Tesla is the way to go!
The “will even fit the kitchen sink” Car – Peugeot 3008
Do you have kids or a bulky hobby like skiing or mountaineering? Or maybe you know you’ll travel to slightly remote areas in your practice and need space for the emergency snow boots? The Peugeot 3008 is an SUV with an edge. Unlike big people carriers, this sleep model looks at maximising boot space; so, you may not be able to seat 7 but you could probably fit an army of spaniels in there. Or about 5 suitcases. So, for those days when you’re all over the place and need to take emergency supplies with you, this car is definitely a good shout.
The Foodie’s Dream – Volvo V90
There are 2 reasons that make this car a great choice for food lovers – the back seat is pretty massive, and the seats are incredibly comfortable. So, if you’re someone who enjoys their food, even when on the go, this Volvo should be on your list of contenders. It’s an elegant estate car which you can personalise to really make it your own, with optional extras that include entertainment packages or resilient floor mats to protect your car from crumbs! It allows you to enjoy your lunch on the go a little more, making that Asda meal deal all the tastier, because it’s eaten in style and comfort. Social workers are professionals who rarely have a traditional lunch break or office canteen, and so our cars become mobile dining rooms, and we want to make sure they’ve got enough space for all the wrappers we could ever need!
The “Will Fit into Any Parking Space” – Hyundai Elantra
We have all experienced the struggle to find a parking space. And it’ll always happen when you’re pressed for time. While we can’t fix the lack of parking spaces next to your office or service users house, we can suggest a decent small car that should (hopefully) fit into those parking spaces that look designed for the tiny Who’s from Whoville. This Hyundai meets that requirement without making even the tallest practitioners feel cramped, while embracing modernity with integrated mobile app systems and a boot that opens itself. It’s also got Smart Sense to support your parking requirements, which includes a monitoring system of how weary or inattentive the driving is. It’s a car that will even tell you when you’re getting too tired! It’s so much more than just a compact mode of transport, it’s an intelligent companion for a social worker!
The One on a Practitioners Budget - Dacia Sandero
We’ve written enough about the funding issues within social work to know that despite the fantastic work being done, social workers are undeniably underpaid. There’s not enough money in the sector for practitioners to enjoy comfortable wages and so we know that there’s a thrifty nature imbedded in most of our community. Therefore, for some, the main factor in a car is the price and from just £6,995 for new, the Dacia Sandero is an excellent investment. It’s not only inexpensive for a car, but it’s not terrible looking either! In fact, the social worker on a budget shouldn’t dismiss it. Car lovers will complain that the sacrifices you must make for the cost (wind-up windows and optional air con) are excessive but if you just need something that will get you from A to B, then consider a Sandero!
By Elena Jones, One Stop Social Team.
While you're here...
No matter what your social work journey has been, we’re here for you. One Stop Social are a community of practitioners who work together to develop the future of social work, and your voice matters to us in this mission. We want to champion the causes that matter to you, celebrate your successes and have a positive impact on your working life however we can.