Advocacy has been around as long as people. One person, who
often has advantages, looks out for another, who often has few.
Seen like that, advocacy is not a service. It's organic and
personal - a community affair. For many people, though, the
word 'advocacy' means a professional, short-term intervention that
aims to solve someone's crisis. That kind of advocacy can help
people solve problems but we think there's a bigger picture:
isolation is the real issue. If you have no-one in your life who
cares about you, then you are vulnerable and more likely to lurch
from crisis to crisis.
Instead of spending their time in a series of crisis
interventions, perhaps professionals could create a different type
of advocacy role - helping to build a more natural, long-lasting
network of advocates around people. What would a different
advocacy role look like? We want to have a conversation with as
many people as possible about this question. So, together with
WEbenable and Frameworks 4 Change, Grapevine has started a new
website: Community Powered Advocacy. Go to www.thecommunityadvocate.org.uk
and click on 'join the debate'.
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