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What is a Social Prescribing Link Worker ?

A Social Prescribing Link Worker aims to connect people with community groups, organisations, and statutory services for practical and emotional support to improve their health and wellbeing.  They may also link people back into health programmes and services where appropriate, e.g., diabetes support courses, Living Well programmes, stress prevention programmes, smoking cessation services, etc.

Link Workers focus on what matters to the person and work in true collaboration with an individual over a period of time.  Working with the individual, they establish the service users' needs and goals, using a personalised coaching and co-production process, which helps motivate, support and empower the person to achieve the change(s) they want.  It is essential to highlight that social prescribing does not replace adequate clinical, social work or counselling services.

One of the key tasks of a Link Worker is to co-produce a personalised health and wellbeing plan with the client. 

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This may include:

  • Listening to what matters to the person.

  • Establishing attainable goals.

  • Signposting to professional support should there be a specific need.

  • Connecting with local community and voluntary organisations, activities and social groups.​

Where a referrer is unsure of the appropriateness of a referral to social prescribing, this can be discussed with the social prescribing Link Worker beforehand.  Likewise, the social prescribing Link Worker can revert to the referrer if the referral is inappropriate. 

Become a Social Prescribing Link Worker

This programme aims to provide existing and potential Social Prescribing Link Workers with targeted evidence-informed knowledge, skills and competencies in the field of Social Prescribing, delivered in an easily accessible manner.  

In supporting the role of Social Prescribers, this certificate will equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to communicate with participants and stakeholders effectively, identify local expertise and resources, coordinate and facilitate programmes of activities, write reports and funding applications and conduct evaluations to support the diverse health and wellbeing of their local community. 

Students will develop a practical understanding of the importance of engaging with allied health professionals and community practitioners in supporting the needs of participants through a series of guest lectures and online seminars. 

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To find out more, contact the

ATUS Admissions Office
T: 353 (0) 71 931 8511
E: admissions.sligo@atu.ie

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