What is Advocacy?
Advocacy simply means speaking up for yourself or others and getting your views and feelings across. Every individual has the right to say what they want and need when important decisions are being made which affect their lives.
However, some people may feel unable to voice their views or concerns. This can be due to any number of reasons or illness. Anyone can feel vulnerable at any time of their lives and can lack the strength, confidence or communication skills to make their voice heard
Advocacy schemes are about taking action to help people say what they want, secure their rights, represent their interests and obtain services they need.
Advocates and advocacy schemes work in partnership with the people they support and take their side. Advocacy promotes social inclusion, equality and social justice.
Advocacy reaches out to some of the most marginalised and disadvantaged sections of the community, people that formal services and systems can overlook: People who may be isolated in their own home, care homes or hospitals; or who lack confidence to speak up because they have been ignored or abused in the past; or lost faith in services; or are unaware that services and support exist.