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Four hundred trainee social workers from across England are taking their first step into the profession in Coventry and Warwickshire over the summer with the largest training programme of its kind returning to the area.

The new recruits are embarking on an intense learning programme being held at Warwick Conferences, the award-winning residential conference venue at the University of Warwick, ahead of taking up roles in local authorities across six regions, including the Midlands.

Warwick Conferences has hosted the five-week Summer Institute, run by charity Frontline as part of its recruitment and training of social workers, since 2015 and has been selected to continue as the official venue for the next three years.

Warwick Conferences’ flexibility, technological abilities, customer service and accommodation facilities were among the reasons it was selected for a second term.

Its access to learning spaces, including The Oculus, allows Frontline to deliver an engaging programme throughout the five weeks. The ability to host large lectures for 500 people, coupled with more flexible and intimate break-out spaces, was also a key factor.

Josie Whitworth, head of programme management at Frontline, said: “Frontline runs the largest social work training programme in the country and we are delighted to be back at Warwick Conferences with our biggest cohort to date.

“Over the last three years, we have experienced truly outstanding services from Warwick Conferences.  For us, it’s crucial that our participants feel comfortable and engaged, during a five-week intense learning programme where sessions can take up much of the day.

“Whether it’s the surrounding environment, which offers beautiful grounds for participants, tutors and staff to relax, or the innovative use of technology in the learning spaces, we have found that Warwick Conferences allows us to continue pushing boundaries we didn’t think were possible for our programme.

“Warwick Conferences and the region is playing an important part in so many people working towards transforming the lives of the most vulnerable children and their families in England.”

The Midlands is the largest region that Frontline works with in terms of the number of local authorities and individuals participating.

This year, 77 graduates of the Summer Institute, which runs until August 16, will start work in ten local authorities in the region, including Coventry, Warwickshire and Birmingham.

Emma Willis, business development manager at Warwick Conferences, said: “We are delighted that Frontline has decided to utilise our venues for another three-year period.

“The Summer Institute is a serious programme with intense learning objectives and we relish working with the Frontline team to develop new ways to engage with its participants.”

As part of the three-year-contract, Warwick Conferences will also host Frontline’s internal activities, including the organisation’s away days and internal engagement activities.

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