Advocacy can have many different meanings all of which are determined by what it is used in relation to. In this article we will be explaining the term ‘advocacy’ in relation to mental health.

What does advocacy mean?

Advocacy is a way to support and enable people to
  • express their views and concerns
  • access information and services
  • defend and promote their rights and responsibilities
  • explore choices and options

What role does the ‘advocate’ play?

An advocate will help enable you to do things such as accessing information you need, attending meetings or interviews with you and provide you with a supportive role. You may want an advocate that is more active than this and does additional things to help such as writing letters on your behalf or speaking for you in situations where you don’t feel able to speak for yourself.

Who uses advocates?

Having a mental health problem can mean that your ideas and opinions may not be taken seriously or, that you are not offered the opportunities and choices you would like.
In these situations advocates work with you to help you speak out, express your views and defend your rights. Advocates are independent and represent your wishes without judging them or putting forward their own personal opinions.

Take a look at more information, tips and resources relating to wellbeing, reslience and recovery from City and Hackney Mind.