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What is Advocacy?

You may need some help to say what you want. An advocate can help you do this. They can also help protect your rights, represent your interests, find things out for you, and help you get the support you need.

What is an advocate?

An advocate can help you if you have great difficulty with being involved in planning your health or social care, and there is nobody else to support you. An advocate can also help you if you are involved in an adult safeguarding enquiry and it is felt that friends or family might not be able to support you. 

Advocates are independent from West Sussex County Council or their partner organisations (such as hospitals, or mental health services).

Independent advocates can help you if you are in hospital, residential or nursing care, or if you live in your own home.

They do not tell you what to do, or make judgements about you. Instead they will support you to make choices and say what you want from services.

If you are not able to say what you want for yourself, they will find out what is important to you, and make sure anybody making decisions takes this into account.

This service is free of charge.

Things you can do

If you think it will be difficult for you to be involved in decisions about your health or social care, then think if you know somebody who can help you. It does not need to be a family member; it can be a close friend. If there is nobody able to help you at the moment, then try and tell the social care worker or health care worker that you need help to get involved.

Support services that are available

Independent Health Complaints Advocacy Service

Independent advocacy (ICAA) service

Independent mental capacity advocacy (IMCA) service

Independent mental health advocacy (IMHA) service

Impact Initiative - advocacy services

Mental health community advocacy service

Further Information

Last reviewed: 20/03/2019

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