Alan and Simon – an advocacy partnership

AlanAlan and Simon have been in an advocacy partnership for 8 years.  Alan has very high support needs, with limited speech and uses his own signing.  He also has a history of becoming aggressive with other residents in a group home where he formerly lived.  Alan doesn’t like meetings or authority and he gets very anxious socialising with too many people. He struggles forming close attachments.  Simon is a volunteer citizen advocate who, over eight years has got to know Alan very well and understands how he expresses himself and communicates his needs.  Simon meets with Alan about every six weeks where they spend time out in the community.  Simon also attends care review meetings and has been advocating for Alan around better person-centred care. Over the last few months, there have been some major changes in Alan’s life where he needed additional independent help. After a period of illness, sadly Alan’s dad passed away.  After Alan had been given the news, he became very distressed.  Simon saw Alan frequently through this difficult time and helped Alan to understand what was happening.  He supported him with information about his dad’s funeral so he could decide if he wanted to attend.  Alan went with Simon to say goodbye to his father in a way which was meaningful for Alan.

Alan’s mum suffers from dementia and was placed in residential care about a year ago.  Alan hadn’t seen his mum throughout this time. Simon also supported Alan to decide whether he wanted to see his mother which he chose to do shortly after his father’s passing.  Simon helped facilitate a meeting with mum and now they will be visiting every few weeks.

As his advocate, Simon is best placed to ensure Alan gets the help and support he needs especially at such difficult times.  Simon will continue to advocate for his partner to see he gets the life he wants and deserves.