An Advocate will work with the young person to understand their wishes and feelings and then either help them to represent those views or in some cases speak on the service user’s behalf. It is not the role of an Advocate to instruct or direct the service user. Communications are confidential unless safeguarding concerns are identified and all service users will be made aware of this.
Whilst many advocacy referrals are made by social workers, any professional working with a young person can, with the young person’s permission, contact Anglia Care Trust and request an Advocate by the completion of a referral form.
The service is available to those:
- Aged up to 18 who can understand and use an Advocate or
- Aged up to 19 if they have a disability or
- Aged up to 24 if a care leaver engaged in higher education (Children Act 1989)
Advocacy services are available to children and young people who are any of the following:
- Looked after (children in care)
- Subject to child protection arrangements
- Designated as children in need
- Care leavers
- Those aged 16/17 who are homeless or have been allocated a social worker
- Those who have a statutory right to have the support of an Independent Advocate
Independent Visiting Service
Independent Visiting is designed to provide positive time out of the placement setting. It can be described as ‘someone you can talk to whilst having fun’.
Independent Visitors primarily take time to listen to and understand the young people, their interests and what they like to do. Visits are usually monthly although this can be varied to meet the needs of the young person.
The majority of Independent Visitors are trained volunteers who want to work with young people.