Community Advocacy is taking action to help people say what they want, secure their rights, represent their interests and obtain the services they need. Community Advocates take the side of the individual.
Some people find it very challenging to express themselves when meeting or talking with health and social care professionals. SIS service users have additional issues around language, culture and information that can erode confidence and self-esteem. Many migrants are unaware of their rights and are unable to assert them.
SIS works with a team of accredited trained Bilingual Community Advocates who work with a service user to focus on a single health or social care issues. They work independently and take instruction from service users and act on mutually agreed plans and preferred outcomes. They attend appointments to support service users to make informed choices by understanding options and the consequences of any decisions to be made. Empowerment is central.
“The advocate who has helped me not only in appointments but with burning questions and unclear messages post appointments. Her regular calls to update me and explain things to me made me feel like I had a big sister looking out for me. I feel reassured each time after meeting with my advocate. I’m grateful for her patience and her encouragement to start using computers.“
SIS is part of the Sussex Advocacy Partnership led by POhWER which delivers a range of statutory and non-statutory advocacy services along with Mind in Brighton & Hove, MindOut, Brighton & Hove Speak Out, and Impact Advocacy.
SIS has been delivery Community Advocacy in Brighton, Hove and Sussex for many years within different projects.