ADVOCACY WEST WALES
Aim: To relieve the effects of mental health problems, disadvantage and disengagement amongst those people affected who live in West Wales, and those areas of Wales commissioning advocacy in partnership with West Wales, through the provision of a comprehensive independent advocacy service.
Advocacy West Wales (AWW) has developed into a specialist mental health advocacy service from small beginnings. In 1993, Mental Health Advocacy Pembrokeshire (MAP) was formed under the auspices of the Pembrokeshire Mental Health Forum and facilitated by West Wales Action for Mental Health. From the beginning, MAP was developed and led by past and current service users, which gave MAP and now AWW a significant emphasis on being service user led.
In its early days MAP had just one advocate, Chris Lacey, who transferred to the organisation from MIND.
With the support of Trustees and research undertaken by Meghana Nagaraj into the need for ‘An Independent Advocacy Service for Older People with Mental Health Problems in Pembrokeshire’, in 2002, and ‘An Independent Advocacy Service for Children and Young People with Mental Health Problems in Pembrokeshire’, in 2003, the service expanded.
Funding was attracted from The Tudor Trust, Henry Doubleday Trust and BBC’s Children in Need, plus numerous smaller charities, to meet the need of users of mental health services across the age range. Monies were also made available to support the voluntary sector in this development by Welsh Government via the Welsh Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA). Additional advocates were employed to meet the needs of service development.
MAP evolved into Mental Health Advocacy Providers with the development of a statutory Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy Service (IMCA) for patients who lacked capacity, in partnership with Eiriol.
The service, as with the initial provision for Independent Mental Health Advocacy (IMHA) under the Mental Health Act 2007, related to provision across the three counties of Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.
MAP Achieved the Quality Performance Mark and was rebranded as Advocacy West Wales (AWW) in 2014. In 2015, AWW made a successful bid for the new IMHA contract securing funding for the provision of the service to 2020. As independent providers seeking to develop and deliver a range of advocacy services, we continue to look to the development of the service with partner organisations in neighbouring counties.
Independent Mental Health Advocacy Service in the Hywel Dda University Health Board area:
If you are in hospital being treated or assessed for a mental health condition, or you are living in the community under section of the Mental Health Act, you are entitled to help from an Independent Mental Health Advocate. We can support you to put forward your views and ensure your voice is heard. We will work through options and consequences and help you understand and uphold your rights. Our service is free, confidential and, most importantly, independent of all other services.
If you or a family member would like to speak to an advocate you can call us on 01437 762935 if you live in Ceredigion or Pembrokeshire and 01267 223197 if you live in Carmarthenshire.
If you are a mental health professional and would like to refer someone in your care please contact the service or complete the referral form below using the contact details on the form.
Advocacy West Wales provides a community based service in Pembrokeshire. Our community service is full time, available in English and Welsh and works with people who have accessed mental health services either in the past or are seeking to access mental health services currently. If you would like to find out more, including whether this service might be of assistance to you don’t hesitate to call our office on 01437 762935 to speak with a member of staff.