Volunteer Delivered Advocacy Service

What do we do?

AdvoCard’s Volunteer Advocacy Workers provide independent advocacy for people in Edinburgh with mental health and problematic substance use issues. We help service users/advocacy partners express what they need from services about the issues that are important for them.

We run a training programme for people who wish to become Volunteer Advocacy Workers.  This is an essential part of our services.

Is it for me?
AdvoCard could help if:

  • your feelings are not being considered
  • you are not being listened to
  • you would like more information
  • you would like to find our more about your rights

How could we help?
AdvoCard can offer a trained Volunteer Advocacy Worker to support you by:

  • listening to what you need from services
  • attending meetings or appointments with you
  • speaking up for you at those meetings
  • helping to draft letters
  • accessing information and helping you explore options

What do we help with?
Some of the issues that people have needed help with include:

  • housing
  • care and treatment, health and wellbeing
  • accessing services of support
  • education and occupation

Community based

Our office is in Leith Walk and is accessible by bus. Update: We are not currenly meeting face-to-face with people at our office as a precaution against Coronavirus/Covid-19.  We will, however, offer phone and email contact.  Tram works starting in late March 2020 will cause disruption to traffic and bus routes heading in the direction of the Foot of the Walk.

Confidentiality
Keeping what you talk to us about confidential is of the utmost importance.  We have policies and procedures (which follow national guidance and laws) in place to keep you and information about you safe.  There might be times when we would need to disclose adult and child protection concerns on to others who have a duty of care for you; if we were to consider taking such action we would always try to discuss this with you first.

How to access Advocacy at AdvoCard
We try to make accessing our services as easy for you as possible. We encourage you to “self refer” or contact us yourself.  Another person can get in touch with us on your behalf as long as you agree to them doing so.

Tel: 0131 554 5307

Text: 07920 207 564

Email: [email protected]

Getting a Volunteer Advocacy Worker

The Volunteer Coordinator will take some details from you to establish what it is you would like help with.  The Voluntary Advocacy Worker will establish how it is that you want them to advocate for you. The important thing to remember is that they will be led by what you want to express to others and they will not give you advice on what is best for you.

So…
If you’re a current or past user of mental health services, and you live in Edinburgh:

– give us a ring on 0131 554 5307
– email [email protected].
– write to AdvoCard, 332 Leith Walk, Edinburgh EH6 5BR