What is Advocacy?
Advocacy is helping or taking action on behalf of a person who is faced with a problem or an issue.
An advocate can support you at times when you are finding it difficult to get your views heard, and can also work to empower you to resolve your problems yourself.
The Role of an Advocate.
Advocates work in a non-judgmental way to develop a relationship built on trust. In this way they engage in a ‘working partnership’ with their client.
An advocate cannot provide advice or specialist information, their role is to assist you to identify options or to signpost you to other appropriate services if this is required.
The advocate is on your side. They will only take action or speak on your behalf if you have given them express permission to do so, and then they will only ever say exactly what you wish them to say. An advocate does not offer their own opinion or views on any subject.
Code of Practice.
All advocates work to the Advocacy Code of Practice. This is in place to ensure that individuals are empowered and supported to be able to get their views and wishes recognised.
What might I see and Advocate for?
An Advocate can assist you for example to:
- Help you talk to your GP about your treatments or mental health issue.
- Help you talk to your mental health team or support services.
- Signpost you to other services.
- Help you access other services.
- Help you make a complaint.
- Liaise with professionals on your behalf or attend meetings with you and the professionals involved with your care.
- Inform you of your rights and how to exercise them.
How do I see an Advocate?
You can ring 01932 622292 and ask to speak to an Advocate, you can book an appointment to see an Advocate in person or to speak over the telephone. You may communicate in another way should you wish such as by letter or email.
If you have specialist communication needs such as translation to another language or signing, please advise us on first contact.