Lead Advocate

Vickers Neal Recruitment Solutions Ltd

Post: Lead Advocate
Responsible to: Service Manager and Regional Coordinator/CEO
Hours: Part time- up to 24 hours per week
Location: Moray, Scotland

Vickers Neal Recruitment Solutions Ltd are currently working with Circles Network based in Moray. Circles Network is a UK wide voluntary organisation renowned for building inclusive communities on the foundations of justice, advocacy, empowerment and friendships.

Service Summary:
Circles Network Advocacy in Moray provides independent professional issue based
Advocacy to individuals living in Fife who are over the age of 16. This includes those affected by mental health issues, learning disabilities, physical disabilities, acquired brain injury, dementia, autistic spectrum disorders, chronic illness and those who are unable to safeguard their own wellbeing, rights, care or other interests.

Job Summary:
Circles Network Lead Advocates support the Service Manager to lead an innovative service, whilst also delivering high quality Advocacy support. Lead Advocates are part of the local management team and provide active support on issues of development, operational delivery, quality assurance and team management.

· To coordinate and support teams of Advocates and volunteers to provide the highest quality of support and follow all policies and procedures in line with Circles Network high standards.
· To provide supervision for the Advocates in their teams, identifying any areas for development and maintaining accurate records and to assist with recruitment of team members.
· Ensuring operational delivery of the day to day service provision in the absence of the manager.
· Maintaining and overseeing the team’s professional practice and training, contributing to training sessions, team meetings and learning events.
· Providing independent advocacy to individuals, in compliance with the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003 and other relevant legislation and guidelines including the Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act 2000.
· To maintain provision and operate within professional advocacy standards in accordance with advocacy guideline, and in line with Circles Network’s Business and Operational plans.
· To ensure that all individuals are supported to advocate in their own right, including the safeguarding of rights relating to those individuals defined as not having capacity/insight.
· To promote awareness of statutory rights and resources available to the individuals using Circles Network Advocacy services.
· To adopt and encourage flexible, person centred approaches to advocacy which meet the needs of each individual.
· To actively seek and identify ways in which to engage particularly vulnerable and isolated individuals, developing the service to constantly extend scope and reach.
· To embrace and coach others in person centred approaches and individualised working to promote and facilitate effective communication of expressed needs in the immediate and long-term future.
· To ensure that the civil and human rights of individuals are recognised, respected and upheld to contribute to the safeguarding of the individuals from the risk of abuse and harm to self and others.
· To maintain accurate and up to date records in a clear and concise manner and write written reports
· To source and provide relevant information on a range of services that the individual may wish to access.
· To actively recruit volunteers and students into the team providing guidance, training and support.
· To contribute to the communication and planning processes within Circles Network
· To organise the administration of work undertaken ensuring efficient, accurate filing and information sharing.
· To facilitate group work sessions with new and on-going groups when appropriate.
· To work proactively with individuals who are additionally vulnerable through matters of incapacity in accordance with statutory principles.
· To create links with advocacy initiatives in order for people of this and our other services to develop relationships, skills and expertise.
· To support people to make informed choices and present information on alternatives to traditional arrangements, in particular, for people who are about to make the transition back in to the community from hospital or restricted setting.
· To undertake training in areas related to Forensic Mental Health provision as appropriate to the service.
· To assist in the provision of training, workshop and presentations as a means to contribute to raising of awareness of the Advocacy Service and role.

Essential Criteria
· Experience as an advocacy practitioner providing both individual and collective advocacy with relevant qualifications and/or experience in advocacy or in a related field.
· Ability to communicate on a personal level with people supported by the Service and a range of practitioners from legal, health, psychiatric, social and educational services.
· Ability to communicate using written, verbal and graphical methods, considering the requirements of diverse individuals. Communicating, in styles as agreed with those supported, in an open and honest manner.
· A willingness to learn new skills such as developing positive relationships and conflict management.
· A clear understanding and commitment to the values of inclusion and equal opportunities and human rights.
· Experience in working with sensitivity, confidentiality and integrity.
· Proven recording skills, ability to write accurate reports for colleagues, Trustees and funders.
· High level organisational skills and efficient time management.
· Full use of a car and / or driver, and willingness to travel to different locations.
· Ability to work flexible hours, which may include evenings and some weekends, and occasional overnight stays.
· Effective ICT skills.
· Experience of working with people who have mental ill health.

If you can provide evidence of all the above requirements, then we are keen to hear from you ASAP! Please submit your cv with a supporting covering letter outlining your availability and desired remuneration.

Upon applying for this post your CV will be submitted to Vickers Neal Recruitment Solutions and Circles Network ONLY.

To apply for this job email your details to eneal@vickersnealrecruitment.co.uk.