This paper describes a teaching and learning initiative developed in a UK social work programme that has involved carers, service users, academic social work staff and practitioners. Post‐graduate student social workers spend 24 hours in agreed periods with family carers or people who use social work services. The paper explains the origins of this initiative, rooted in a model of service user and carer involvement established over a number of years within the social work programme at the University of Dundee, Scotland. The development of this teaching and learning method is outlined and an account is given by a family carer describing their experience of being involved in the programme. Findings from the evaluation of this first year of operation are reported.