Finding someone to speak for you

Advocacy is a way of helping children and adults to have their voice heard about important things.

What is advocacy?

Advocacy can help support people of all ages to:

  • have their voices heard on issues that are important to them
  • safeguard and defend their rights
  • have their views and wishes genuinely considered when decisions are being made about their lives and services
  • gain personal skills which can also be used elsewhere, thus promoting their independence across their life.

Types of advocacy

There are different types of advocacy which include:

  • family, friends or someone else speaking on behalf of an individual or supporting them to speak for themselves
  • the person advocating for themself by developing ‘speaking up skills’ 
  • formal advocacy on behalf of one person provided on a paid or voluntary basis with a qualified advocate.

Oxfordshire Advocacy Hub

All advocacy services in Oxfordshire have been delivered by the Oxfordshire Advocacy Hub since October 1, 2019.

The hub is being co-delivered by the charity POhWER and the National Youth Advocacy Service (NYAS). POhWER is carrying out the adults' services and NYAS is doing the children's.

You can find more information about getting services below.

The children and young persons' service was formerly carried out by the Volunteer Independent Visiting and Advocacy (VIVA) and the adults' service was delivered by Getting Heard.

Welcome to Community Connex: Advocacy 1st

About us

Community ConneX is an established health and social care charity and have supported communities for over 75 years. We help people to live healthier, happier, and more independent lives. We do this by supporting individuals and families in their daily lives, providing them with opportunities to engage with others, make their voices heard, develop new skills, and grow. 

Our Advocacy 1st Team

Our dedicated advocacy team will support children and young people to have their voice heard. Advocates are independent and will listen, empower, and encourage children and young people to speak up and be included in decisions made about them.  We can help children and young people to understand their rights, make informed choices about their lives and attend important meetings about them, including Looks after children’s reviews, child protection conferences or other meetings. 

As part of our new service, we are committed to ensuring that Children and Young people continue to be supported. We will be to ensure a smooth transition of Advocacy services, so existing and new advocacy support is delivered. 

We would like to continue with the good advocacy work complete in Oxfordshire and we are committed to continue the good work to support children and young people in Oxfordshire. 

Referrals for Children and Young people’s advocacy can be made by

We have a dedicated referral co-ordinator who is able to guide you through the referrals process. 

About VoiceAbility

VoiceAbility supports people to be heard when it matters most. They’ve been supporting people to be heard in decisions about their health, care, and wellbeing for over 40 years.

They’re an independent charity and one of the largest providers of advocacy and involvement services in the UK.

If you have any questions you can get in touch by: 

In Oxfordshire, they offer the following types of advocacy:

  • Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy Service (IMCA)
  • Paid Relevant Person's Representative Service(RPR)
  • Rule 1.2 (CoPDoLS)
  • Independent Mental Health Advocacy Service (IMHA) – within Secure Hospital and Prison settings
  • NHS Independent Complaints Advocacy Service
  • Independent Care Act Advocacy Service (ICAA)
  • Community Advocacy

Becoming an advocate or independent visitor