What is advocacy?
Advocacy is free, independent support to involve you in decisions about your health, care and wellbeing. An advocate is an independent professional who is on your side. They can support you to have your say and know your rights.
Advocates don’t work for the council, the NHS, or care providers. When you work with an advocate, they will keep things confidential. You don’t need to pay for an advocate.
What do advocates do?
An advocate will:
- listen to what you think about what’s happening to you
- help you say what you want and don’t want
- help you understand information about your situation
- explain your options
- plan with you about what to do next
An advocate will not
- offer counselling or befriending
- offer legal advice
- make decisions for you
- tell you what to do
If at any point you need support that your advocate cannot offer, they can help you find out if there is someone who can. You can ask to stop advocacy support at any time.
Voiceability is the commissioned service in Barnet for Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy (IMCA) and NHS Complaints Advocacy. You can find out more about the services that they offer here. If you think that you would benefit from an advocate, you can contact the Barnet Carers Adult Carers Team here and request a referral or discuss your situation.