Abstract: Social workers face unique challenges in working with families, young people and children in rural and remote communities. Simultaneously, workers juggle dual relationships, personal boundaries and high visibility. Social work practise in rural Australia also faces high staff turnover, burnout and difficulties with recruitment, retention and available professional supervision. A lack of professional supervision has been identified as directly contributing to decreased worker retention in rural and remote areas. This paper reports on emerging themes from a qualitative research study on peer supervision in virtual teams in rural and remote Australia. Data collection consisted of pre- and post-trial individual interviews, monthly group supervision sessions, online evaluations and focus groups. A key conclusion from the study is that peer group supervision worked in supporting rural and remote workers to perform their everyday professional roles. The ease and access afforded by the use of simple technology was noteworthy. Whilst the research was conducted with social workers in rural and remote areas, the use of peer group supervision could be applicable for other professionals who work with families and communities in rural and remote Australia.
Nickson, Amanda, Gair, Susan, Miles, Debra, 2016, Supporting isolated workers in their work with families in rural and remote Australia: Exploring peer group supervision, Edition:2016/11/29, Volume:41, Journal Article, viewed 17 August 2022, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=13620.