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Plaistow social worker and Forest Gate libraries chief recognised in New Year’s Honours list

PUBLISHED: 10:00 28 December 2019 | UPDATED: 09:12 30 December 2019

Carol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, and Esther Fajoye, from Plaistow, have been awarded MBEs in the New Year's Honours. Picture: Carol Boswarthack-Slater/Esther Fajoye

Carol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, and Esther Fajoye, from Plaistow, have been awarded MBEs in the New Year's Honours. Picture: Carol Boswarthack-Slater/Esther Fajoye

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A social worker and libraries chief have been recognised in this year’s New Year’s Honour’s list.

Carol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, was awarded an MBE. Picture: Carol Boswarthack-SlaterCarol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, was awarded an MBE. Picture: Carol Boswarthack-Slater

Esther Fajoye, from Plaistow and Carol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, were awarded MBEs, it was revealed today (December 28).

Social worker, Esther, who scooped her MBE for services to children and young people, said: "I'm still in shock really. It's quite an overwhelming feeling. It's an honour to be recognised."

The 30-year old team leader at Camden Council has worked in child protection at the local authority for about seven years, pioneering its use of a more reflective, relationships-based approach.

Interest in social work jobs was boosted after she became the voice of people in that field as part of a recruitment drive at Camden where she is recognised for her "approachable, sensitive and encouraging manner".

Esther Fajoye from Plaistow has been awarded an MBE for services to children and young people. Picture: Esther FajoyeEsther Fajoye from Plaistow has been awarded an MBE for services to children and young people. Picture: Esther Fajoye

A former Havering College student, Esther did youth and voluntary work before landing on her dream job.

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"I just wanted to make a difference and thought I could make more as a social worker. It definitely takes a lot of emotional resilience. Some cases really worry you. But my passion has always been there," she said.

On her MBE for services to libraries, Carol, said: "In a way, I feel like the cheekiest woman in the world because I'm being honoured to do a job I've loved doing all my life.

Carol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, was awarded an MBE. Picture: Carol Boswarthack-SlaterCarol Boswarthack-Slater, of Forest Gate, was awarded an MBE. Picture: Carol Boswarthack-Slater

"Anyone who works in a library should feel proud their profession is being honoured."

The 60-year old head of Barbican and Community Libraries for the City of London was recognised for running a service relevant to all communities.

Avid reader Carol - whose favourite book is The Wind in the Willows - wanted to become a librarian after her dad told her as a toddler it would mean she could read every book.

She started out at the age of 16 at Bancroft Road Library in Bethnal Green, going on to work in services in Camden, Waltham Forest and Redbridge. She has served as president of The Association of London Chief Librarians - now London Libraries - and sits on a government advisory group.

Her work on the role of libraries in combatting loneliness was also singled out for praise.

"Libraries appeal to anybody. Whoever you are, you'll find a welcome. That's unique and very precious," Carol said.


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