There are various ways to be involved with Citizen Advocacy. Below is a list of different roles that may be of interest to you. If you would like to volunteer or just find out more about them, we invite you to call or drop by our office to discuss your interest. Alternatively, you can contact us via the online form on this page.
Advocates do not need special qualifications, experience or indeed prior involvement with people with disabilities. They do, however, need to believe strongly in the right and need of people with intellectual disability to be treated with dignity and respect. They need to be prepared to enter into a long-term relationship, where they will be diligent in safeguarding the well being of the person with intellectual disability, speaking up and taking action on their behalf whenever necessary.
Crisis advocates have the same beliefs as long term advocates; however, their role is more task orientated and generally only lasts long enough to resolve a specific issue in the life of the person with disability. Typically, a crisis advocate is a resourceful, persistent and versatile person with calm self-confidence.
Advocate associates are primarily a resource for advocates. They are people who have expertise, knowledge or experience in a particular area (such as health, housing, legal issues etc), which may assist an advocate to deal with a specific issue in the life of their protégé with disability. Although not undertaking advocacy themselves, advocate associates provide time and information to advocates free of charge.
A link person is someone who assists us to recruit appropriate advocates. We ring them from time to time to ask if they know of someone within their network of friends and acquaintances, who fits the profile of the person we are seeking as an advocate and who may be willing to hear about Citizen Advocacy.
In addition to attending and participating in monthly meetings, overseeing the employed staff and the operation of the program, our volunteer board members are also encouraged to be actively involved.