About Merton

Merton has a population of just over 215,000 residents (including 50,700 children and young people aged 0-19). There is a rich mix of ethnicities and cultures in Merton. People from the global majority make up 33% of the population, and there are 161 languages are spoken in our borough - the most prominent first languages spoken being English, Polish, Urdu and Tamil.  

Most famous for the Wimbledon Tennis tournament (which attracts tens of thousands of visitors per year), AFC Wimbledon, and the annual Mitcham Carnival, we are proud of the cultural offer in Merton.  

There are also many bars and restaurants, and just over the borough boundaries are Hampton Court Palace, the river Thames, Epsom Downs and Racecourse and Box Hill with its panoramic views over Surrey. 

Plus, Merton is one of the safest and greenest boroughs in London. 

Although an outer borough, we are situated in a very well connected area of south London with fourteen National Rail stations, five underground stations (District and Northern lines) and the London Trams service joining Wimbledon, Morden, and Croydon. The road network offers access to the M23, M25, Channel Tunnel and airports. Morden and Wimbledon stations offer bus service connections to surrounding areas. 

About children's social work in Merton

“Everything we do is to serve our community to create the conditions for every child to experience a life full of love, opportunity and belonging”

Watch our short video about who we are

We want Merton to be a great place for every child to grow up, and to give every child the best start in life.  Our unique Relationship Based Practice Framework support our social workers to achieve this ambition and to be compassionate, creative and children centred practitioners.

Our values underpin how we work together in Merton, how we make decisions, and how we practice social work alongside our children and families:   

  • We keep children and young people at the heart of our work. 

  • We work together to achieve the best for our children, young people, and families. 

  • We ‘Think Family.’ 

  • We are committed to doing what we say we will do. 

  • We learn from what we do to improve the experiences of children, young people, and families.  

We celebrate difference.  

Our Children’s Services are 'Outstanding'

Our children's services have recently been judged Outstanding by Ofsted, building on our ‘Good’ rating from 2017, as we move towards the pinnacle of our high quality and standards of practice.

Our Leaders are committed and focused on supporting our staff and families. We work well with our partners and are committed to making decisions alongside our children and families. 

“Merton’s excellent services are delivered by skilled, experienced social workers and other frontline practitioners to provide sensitive and innovative child-centred interventions.”

Ofsted, 2022 

Some of the aspects of our children's services that we are particularly proud of are:

  • Children and young people participating in service design  

  • We have implemented a blended practice model which combines the best parts of signs of safety, systemic practice and relationship based social work 

  • Effective partnerships and a shared approach delivering and improving key services with other agencies, including schools 

  • A wide range of Early Help services, designed to prevent the need for statutory intervention, and a commitment to continuous improvement 

  • Preventative mental health services including schools access to the Mental Health in Schools Team 

  • A highly effective Youth Justice Service supporting children supporting children 

  • Timely, good quality practice with children who are involved in the public law framework, including service managers now chairing the first PLO meeting 

  • A successful Social workers in schools’ programme, exploring better ways to support children and providing effective help and support at an earlier stage 

  • Stable placements for our children in care, whilst ensuring they are receiving the best possible education 

  • Well embedded children missing education process, with monthly multi-agency meetings reviewing all children out of school and those with below 20% attendance.  

Here’s a short video of our Cabinet Member for Children’s Services showcasing our Family Hub

Our offer to you

At Merton, we offer a fantastic environment for you to take the next step in your social work career in our borough.  This offer includes:

  • A social work role in a children’s services department rated OUTSTANDING by Ofsted 

  • A staffing structure that provides clear career progression pathways and opportunities.

  • A varied and interesting case load, working with children and families from our diverse population 

  • Access to an established an academy that supports students and newly qualified staff. 

  • A peaceful, suburban environment, that remains connected to the inner city due to our fantastic transport links 

  • membership of the Local Government Pension Scheme

  • wide range of professional development programmes available to enhance your career

  • flexible working

  • generous leave entitlement

  • parental leave and shared parental leave schemes

  • employee assistance programme (EAP) - free access for you and your family to expert advice and guidance on major life events, 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year

  • range of lunchtime exercise classes

  • discounted membership to our leisure centres

  • wellbeing programme - wellbeing champions and mental health support

  • occupational health service to help keep you healthy and safe at work

  • contribution towards eye test and glasses for display screen equipment (DSE) users

  • regular walking ‘step count’ challenge

  • Kaarp employee discount scheme - range of leisure activities, from days out to magazine subscriptions, as well as hair and beauty treatments, entertainment events and discounts at local restaurants

  • interest-free season ticket loan for public transport

  • cycle to work scheme

  • adult cycle training

  • running club

  • discounts on selected adult learning courses

Find out more