How to be an advocate
Advocacy is about speaking up, raising awareness of specific issues and solutions, working with others to make a difference, and encouraging decision makers towards solutions that have a positive effect on children's lives.
Advocacy is the process of people participating in decision-making processes, which affect their lives. Being an advocate for children's issues means working with and for children to advocate for change. Advocating for children means ensuring as much as possible, and where appropriate, that children are participants in the process, not just objects of the process. Enabling child participation requires consideration of the safety of children and the age appropriateness of activities.
Advocacy can be undertaken individually or in groups. Coordinating activities locally, regionally or nationally as part of a group can be a very powerful way of ensuring decision-makers are aware of the issues impacting on children and families. Lobbying individually and directly to decision-makers can be a powerful way to lobby your own personal perspective on the issue.â€¨
The focus of advocacy can be large universal issues that require major changes to policy and practice or small, more localised, issues. Regardless of how large or small the action required, the purpose of child-focused advocacy is ensuring a positive effect on children's lives.