#WordFromTheThird Podcast – Advocacy
On this edition of Word From the Third, we talk with David Davies and Chris Hooper about the Gwent Access to Advocacy helpline and what advocacy means.
What is advocacy?
Advocacy is when a person gets support from another person to help them express their views, wishes and feelings. Typically when social services are making decisions that might affect them.
A relative or friend may be able to be your advocate but when this is not possible or appropriate you may need the support of an independent professional advocate.
How can advocacy help?
Independent advocates do not work for social services, their role is to support you to get your voice heard.
Advocates can help you to stand up for your rights.
They will listen to you and be on your side.
They will help you understand your options and help you make your own decisions
They can also support and represent you at meetings if you want them to.
The Social Services and Wellbeing Act (Wales) states that councils must provide access to advocacy services and make advocacy support available to its citizens.
Where can people go if they need the support of an advocate in Gwent?
The Gwent Access to Advocacy helpline (GATA) is a free, single point of contact for information and advice about advocacy in Gwent.
If you are 18+ and live in Gwent (BG, Torfaen, Caerphilly, Mon, Newport) you can call the helpline for free on 0808 801 0566, Mon to Fri 10am to 3pm.
The staff at GATA can provide:
Information, advice and support with signposting and referrals to adult advocacy services.
GATA is independent of local authority councils, the NHS and advocacy providers and can help ensure that you receive the type of advocacy that is right for you.
All this information and more is available on their website: www.gata.cymru.