Accessibility Statement
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Independent Advocacy

What is advocacy?

Advocacy is free, independent support to involve people in decisions about their health, care and wellbeing.

An advocate is an independent professional who is on your side. They can support you to have your say and know your rights. Advocates don’t work for the council, the NHS, or care providers. You don’t need to pay for an advocate. 

An advocate can help you to
  • understand your options
  • say what you want and don’t want
  • make your own choices
  • know your rights
“You are the first person who has listened to me.” Mary,* who was supported by an advocate

Find out More about Advocacy

Find out More about Advocacy


Information in Easy Read

Information in Easy Read



Independent advocacy in Tameside

VoiceAbility provides these advocacy services in Tameside:
  • Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy (IMCA)
  • Independent Mental Health Advocacy (IMHA)
  • Relevant Person’s Representative (RPR)
  • Care Act advocacy
  • General advocacy

HealthWatch provides NHS complaints advocacy in Tameside. However, they may refer your complaint to VoiceAbility if you need specialist support.
General (non-statutory) advocacy in Tameside is available to:
  • People who require advocacy support regarding a health and social care issue
  • Vulnerable adults aged 18 and over who reside in the borough of Tameside; or  registered with a GP in the Borough of Tameside
  • Tameside GMICP patients – who are IMHA qualifying patients on Tameside wards or in the community
  • People who are open to social care services or a community mental health team
  • People who have a substantial difficulty in-line with the Care Act 2014
  • People who have no appropriate person to support them in line with the Care Act
  • People with a specific issue, in a significant area, that they require support to resolve

“When we decided to put mum in a care home, Salma really helped us understand the process and included us, breaking things down for us to understand and listening to my mother-in-law’s wishes. We know she worked very hard to get my mother-in-law’s voice heard and made sure her cultural needs weren't ignored or minimised.” Nur,* whose family member was supported by an advocate
Find out More About who is Eligible for Advocacy

Find out More About who is Eligible for Advocacy



How to make a referral

You can make a referral yourself, as a friend or family member, or as a professional for IMHA or general advocacy.

Only professionals can make a referral for IMCA, paid RPR and Care Act advocacy.

Make a Referral Online

Make a Referral Online


Alternatively, you can contact VoiceAbility by phone, email or webchat.
Phone: 0300 303 1660
*To protect their privacy, these aren’t people’s real names, but their stories are genuine.