AWARE is a sector-driven co-design project to provide specialist training and skill development for existing and potential individual advocates, working in areas of social justice and human rights.
The word “Advocate” comes from the Latin, meaning ” to stand beside”.
By standing beside those who experience disadvantage across many spheres, advocates play a key role in enabling social justice and providing access to human rights and basic needs for those who need support.
Despite the thousands of advocates being employed across WA and the immense and growing need for these services, prior to the AWARE project, there was no dedicated training available to teach specialist advocacy skills. While individual advocacy units exist under the VET system, there is no dedicated course designed for Advocacy specialists.
The Pilot Course
This project was initiated by a collective of eleven community organisations providing individual advocacy including: Health Consumers Council (WA), Developmental Disability WA, Consumers of Mental Health WA, Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre, Explorability Inc., Ethnic Disability Advocacy Centre, Women’s Health and Family Services, Family Inclusion Network of WA, Uniting WA, People with Disabilities WA, and Circle Green Community Legal (previously Tenancy WA).
The project was funded by Lotterywest from January 2021 until June 2022 to develop the training course, set up an online hub and run a pilot course. The project was auspiced by the Health Consumers Council (WA) and coordinated and administrated by local training organisation Evolve WA (Evolve).
The AWARE Advocacy pilot course has now come to an end. Participant engagement during the 12-week course was extremely high and the project was considered a great success by all stakeholders.
AWARE is seeking organisational project partners for 2023 to help the project progress.
The partnership opportunity is designed to require minimal time from partner organisations and allow each to determine its own degree of engagement, based on interests and capacity.
Partnership is cost-neutral and does not require any financial investment.
While all Expressions of Interest (EOIs) will be considered, ideally partners will be WA-based non-profit organisations who employ individual advocates and/or serve clients who utilise individual advocacy services.
If you would like to partner with this project, please complete this nomination form by Friday 10 February.
AWARE is currently seeking funding for the next phase of the project, for which we hope to deliver four courses between July 2023 and December 2024.