• Birthright Dev

Fiona Robertson receives Honoured Commonwealth Social Worker award


Birthright Chairperson Fiona Robertson ANZASW Social Worker, presented “Honoured Commonwealth Social Worker Award” at a virtual meeting of the Commonwealth Organisation for Social Workers (COSW) 22 October.

The formal citation, read by COSW Chair Dr Sylvia Daisy Romanus, stated “Fiona served for many years as Board Member and Honorary Treasurer of COSW. She was elected as Honorary Treasurer of International Federation of Social Worker 2002-2014, awarded the Andrew Mouravieff-Apostol Medal in 2012 and is currently Honorary Archivist. She was honoured with Life Membership for her work in Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers.

Fiona was a witness to the signing of the first COSW constitutional documents in 2000 and played a crucial role in COSW from that time until her retirement as Treasurer in 2020. She was involved in the NGO Sector of the Commonwealth Health Ministers Meetings and attended several Commonwealth meetings and events. She played a key role in inaugural and ongoing COSW policy work. Fiona is the walking archive of knowledge about international social work including the activities of COSW. She helped keep COSW focused through challenging times.

Fiona is well qualified in financial management and also passionate about social work, interested in the wide range of social policy, human rights and human dignity. She is especially committed to recognising ‘the rights of women and of indigenous peoples’ in her home country and around the world.

COSW owes a great debt to Fiona for her vision and financial skills; she is a most worthy recipient of this Honoured Commonwealth Social Worker Award”.

Fiona is one of 5 recipients presented with the inaugural awards. Other recipients were Anthony Tan (Malaysia) and Terry Bamford (UK) posthumously; Ngoh Tiong Tan (Singapore) and Nigel Hall (UK)

Fiona commented she was delighted to receive the award and thanked everyone past and present for their work for COSW.