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Advocacy

What is Advocacy?

Advocacy means giving a person support to have their voice heard. It is a service aimed at helping people to understand their rights and express their views, wishes and feelings.

At My Life Advocacy, we provide Independent Care Act Advocacy to eligible people who live in the Wigan borough. We are entirely independent of any other professionals or services. 

Independent advocates like us are there to support people to make informed choices about their life, understand the important issues, know their rights, take control and ensure that their voice is heard.

Click here for an easy read version of what Advocacy is. 

We ensure that our advocates work to the Advocacy Charter. Click on the links below to see the ten principles of the Advocacy Charter that we follow.

Advocacy Charter

Advocacy Charter (Easy Read)


Independent Care Act Advocacy – Care and Support

You have a right to be involved in decisions made about your care and support, no matter how complex your needs. Independent Care Act Advocacy helps you to be actively involved in the care and support process and make your views, wishes and feelings heard. 

Independent Care Act Advocacy (2014) states that some people are legally entitled to have an independent advocate to support them to understand and take part in making decisions affecting the care, treatment and support they receive, or should be receiving.

An advocate can offer support through the following:

  • An assessment or review of care
  • CHC assessment or review
  • Safeguarding (Section 42 enquiry or safeguarding adult review)

What will a Care Act Advocate do?

  • Your advocate will support you to speak up and be listened to
  • They will talk to you privately and they will also support you to communicate with others and at meetings
  • Your advocate will support you to understand the assessment processes and help you take control to make choices about your care, treatment and support
  • An advocate WILL NOT tell you what to do or force their opinions on you

Advocacy during the Covid-19 pandemic

During the Covid-19 pandemic we are continuing to take referrals and provide high-quality advocacy and support to the people in our communities. We work hard to help people to live the life they want to live.


How will our advocates help you?

At My Life Advocacy, we will go above and beyond to support you in whichever way you may need us.

Our advocates work independently from any local authorities or health and social care professionals, so you can be confident that our main focus is to support YOU in the first instance.

We can support you by:

  • Listening to you
  • Being non-judgemental / not making judgements about you
  • Providing you with information and guidance / giving you information and guidance
  • Genuinely understanding your concerns
  • Exploring your options
  • Helping you think about outcomes and consequences
  • Respecting your decisions
  • Helping you to communicate your thoughts, needs and wishes

When can we help?

If you’re ever finding it a challenge to get your voice heard during any tough situations in your life, we can help.

Some of the common times you may find you need someone ‘fighting your corner’ include:

  • When you’re using or need access to healthcare or social services
  • When you’re not feeling at your most confident
  • When you’re facing a life changing decision – maybe on where you’re living or what care you’re receiving
  • When you’re coping with personal or family illness, disability of bereavement
  • When you need practical support if you have a mental health issue or you’re in emotional distress
  • When you need support to feel fully informed and involved in discussions about things such as medical treatment
  • When you’re being stopped or prevented from doing something that is important to you
  • When you have a communication difficulty and need support to express yourself


Eligibility

Who can have a Care Act Advocate?

You may be entitled to an Independent Advocate to support you through your Health and Social Care assessments, support plans, reviews or safeguarding enquiries if:

  1. You have / may have difficulty being involved in your assessments, and
  2. You do not have anybody else suitable to support you

Difficulties include:

  • Understanding relevant information
  • Retaining information
  • Using or weighing up information – the pros and cons
  • Communicating your own views, wishes and feelings

You can make a self-referral or ask a friend or relative to make one on your behalf. We also take referrals from social care professionals.


How to refer, or contact us

Most of our referrals come from the Local Authority, however if you wish to self-refer you can phone 01257 472900 and press option (2) to do a referral over the phone.

Alternatively, you can download our referral form here, or send an e-mail to advocacy@my-life.org.uk and we will get back in touch with you to explain what you need to do. 

Our office hours are Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

Professionals in the Wigan Borough can refer through Mosaic.

If you do self-refer, please take the time to read our GDPR statement, which explains how we process and store your data. 


Other ways we can support you

A woman working for My Life.We can sometimes help with general advocacy matters or can advise you how to advocate for yourself or how to advocate on behalf of someone else.

If you need help, advice, or are unsure what support you need, we may be able to signpost you to other services or providers that could help you. 

To find out more about any of these, please contact us by e-mailing advocacy@my-life.org.uk or by calling 01257 472900 and pressing option (2). 


Useful links

Please click on the links below to find out more.

Independent Advocacy under the Care Act 2014

Understanding Self Advocacy

 

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