Advocacy is defined as a key concept in social work practice.

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Introduction

ADVOCACY REPORT Advocacy is defined as a key concept in social work practice. It is defined as exerting influence on behalf of organisations and groups within legal power and political structure. " Advocacy involves either an individual or group, or their representatives, pressing their case with influential others, about situations which either affect them directly or, and more usually, try to prevent proposed changes, which will leave them worse off" (Soloman 1985) There are not many opportunities for technical advocacy at my placement. By technical I mean for example advocating on someone appealing on behalf of a social benefit. However there are some opportunities for personal advocacy. This is because the service users are from an Asian heritage background, which results in the majority of them having a definite language barrier because they do not understand or speak English very well. Service users find it difficult to voice their concerns and wishes; this makes them more vulnerable and marginalized from the rest of society. A review and evaluation of Mrs R 's care plan was being undertaken by the social worker, however there was a definite language barrier because Mrs R's first language is not English.

Middle

Therefore I feel I had control in this area as I was translating what Mrs R was saying to the social worker and what the social worker was saying to Mrs R without my presence this would not have been possible. In this instance I felt I had power over the social worker and Mrs R. Although social workers have considerable power over service users I felt that Mrs R also had power. This is because only she understands her needs strengths, desires and concerns and what she had to say had to be listened to and taken into account. Partnership working was also evident throughout the advocacy process. I felt all three of us worked together to achieve desired outcomes. Mrs R and myself worked together as I as supporting and translating for her. Mrs R also worked and co-operated with the social worker in voicing her issues and the social worker and myself worked together on translating and the sharing of information. The process of advocacy involved the social worker carrying out a review and assessment on Mrs R.

Conclusion

I also felt I improved my interpersonal skills Punjabi and gained more confidence in this area. I also felt that Mrs R was comfortable and at ease with myself advocating on her behalf as she knows me from the day-care centre. Therefore we had a good understanding relationship where else if an out side translator was brought in it may have affected Mrs R 's openness and she may not have been relaxed as she was with myself. I feel my knowledge and ability to communicate in two different languages and constantly switching from one to another is a great skill that can be used in advocacy where there is a language barrier and can also help fellow colleges, professionals and service users in aiding communication. In conclusion the overall outcome of the advocacy about Mrs R' s review and evaluation of her care plan was that all services were to remain the same. Both Mrs R and the social worker were grateful for my presence in aiding communication and the sharing of information. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1

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