What Is An Advocate?
The full name for the advocates we find for people is ‘Citizen Advocates’. Citizen Advocates are ordinary people who choose to stand by someone who may be vulnerable in their own community.
DAI finds Citizen Advocates for people living in West Fife who are vulnerable because they have a learning disability – we call people we match with Citizen Advocates ‘Partners’.
What does a Citizen Advocate do?
Like all relationships, every Citizen Advocacy Partnership is unique, but in general a Citizen Advocate:
• gets to know his/her Partner, spending time together and building up a picture of the Partner’s life
• helps the Partner to examine his/her situation and decide what issues are important to him/her
• spends time discussing different options so that the Partner has unbiased support to help him/her to make vital decisions.
• focuses on what the Partner wants and helps him/her to put his/her own views forward
• treats the Partner as an equal and encourages others to do the same
• is prepared to make a long-term commitment once the Partnership is established