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Just Life 112

Taking time for advocacy

  • 2 min read |
  • Posted by Justlife
  • On 02 September 2015
Christa has been with Justlife for 2 years. Now an experience project worker, her role has developed and she is now working on the Just Thinking research project and has taken the position of specialist advocate at the Justlife Centre in Manchester.So, what is the role of an advocate at Justlife?"Welfare, housing, energy and banking systems are difficult to navigate at the best of times. For our service users these are especially complex due to additional issues that they are facing such as IT illiteracy, poor literacy, substance misuse issues, homelessness and mental health issues. My job as an advocate is to work alongside people with particularly complex cases involving these systems to help them understand the processes involved and appeal and apply for support so people can access what they are entitled to.I have mainly been working on welfare appeals, for those who have been sanctioned or reassigned inappropriate benefits and housing issues, where people have been excluded from social housing prior to our intervention. Increasingly we are seeing a need for accessing bank accounts, especially for those with no fixed address or with no ID, so I am developing access to banking accounts with Nigel Fyles, Justlife at Home Manager."This role strengthens and supports the centre team in Manchester and provides a space to resolve complex issues for service users.