What is advocacy?
Advocacy is about having somebody who is there just for you, to:
- Stand up for you and take your side.
- Help you talk to people about problems and sort them out.
- Listen to you and support you.
- Explain things to you.
- Come to meetings with you.
- Make sure you have your say and that people listen.
What is an Advocate?
An advocate is a person that does all the things above. We come across advocates every day.
Parents stand up for their children, children stick up for their friends. If someone has to go to a difficult meeting or into a new situation they might ask a friend to go with them. The friend is being an advocate.
Teachers and people like Social Workers can support you too. Sometimes though you need an advocate who is not a member of your family, a friend or someone who works with you because your problem might involve these people. This is called an 'Independent Advocate'.
There are organisations who can provide Independent Advocates. These are 2 that work in Suffolk.
ACE - For people aged 18+ (Stowmarket)
Tel: 01449 678088 or 01728 604399
ACE - Young People's Speaking Up Groups
In Lowestoft, Ipswich or Bury St Edmunds
Tel: 01449 678088
NYAS - National Youth Advocacy Service (For Children and Young people aged 0-19 years)
99-105 Argyle Street
Young Person's Helpline: 0800 61 61 01