If you find it difficult to understand your care and support or find it hard speak up, there are people who can act as a spokesperson for you.
They make sure you're heard and are called advocates.
For example, they can help you:
- understand the care and support process
- talk about how you feel about your care
- make decisions
- challenge decisions about your care and support if you do not agree with them
- stand up for your rights
They can write letters for you and attend meetings with you.
Advocates will support you during:
- care and support planning
- safeguarding and reviews
Advocates are independent of social services and the NHS.
How your council can help
Your council has to provide an advocate if you do not have family or friends to help and you have difficulty:
- understanding and remembering information
- communicating your views
- understanding the pros and cons of different options
A paid carer cannot act as an advocate for you.
How to get an advocate
Contact social services at your local council and ask about advocacy services. Find your local social services.
POhWER is a charity that helps people to be involved in decisions being made about their care. Call POhWER's support centre on 0300 456 2370 for advice.
SeAp Advocacy gives advocacy support. Call 0330 440 9000 for advice or text SEAP to 80800 and someone will get back to you.
VoiceAbility gives advocacy support. Call 01223 555800 for advice or find the phone number for your local VoiceAbility service.
Contact the charity Age UK to see if they have advocates in your area. Contact Age UK online or call 0800 055 6112.