It does not matter how old you are, what your financial situation is, where you come from, what your educational accomplishments are or aren’t, what gender you are, whether you are learning about this for the first time while reading this or if you have years of experience about Chronic Pain, Polytrauma and Traumatic Brain Injury, or any of the things in between.
You have the ability to help bring awareness, to share information, to share your story, to learn from other’s stories, to speak for those who may not have a voice to speak for themselves, ask questions until you understand. You have the ability to make a difference in someone’s life, even yours. You have resources here in these pages, on this website, to help make that difference in our world.
Help One Person Excel – To Be Independent.
Help us Bring Awareness by sharing this Site with others through talking about it, sending the link in emails, texts, or on your social media, at your work, with your family, with your friends, with your healthcare provider, with your attorney, with a neighbor – the possibilities are endless.
Help Share Information through Networking by gathering information from other Sources that are useful to your particular situation.
Share your factual Stories with us. Words are a powerful therapeutic way to express a thought, feeling, idea, a way to relate to others, to educate, to cope.
Contact us with your ideas, topics you would like to see on here, if you would like to submit a guest Blog post, share information you have learned with us, if there are any links that are not working on this Site, etc. Make sure you take some time to read our Frequently Asked Questions page as well.
You have the ability to read, to listen, to explore, to become an Advocate for change; become an advocate for your patient, your client, your family member, your friend, a complete stranger, a coworker, and the most important relationship in all of this…..yourself. You are your own best self-advocate.
DEFINITION OF SELF-ADVOCACY
Self-Advocacy is learning how to speak up for yourself, making your own decisions about your own life, learning how to get information so that you can understand things that are of interest to you, finding out who will support you in your journey, knowing your rights and responsibilities, problem solving, listening and learning, reaching out to others when you need help and friendship, and learning about self-determination.
Self-advocacy refers to an individual’s ability to effectively communicate, convfey, negotiate or assert his or her own interests, desires, needs, and rights. It involves making informed decisions and taking responsibility for those decisions. (VanReusen et al., 1994)
-See more at: www.ehhs.kent.edu/cite/CASAP/docs/SADef+tips.doc
Self-advocacy is when you speak up for yourself, when you decide what YOU want to do now or in the future, you are a self-advocate. Self-advocacy means understanding your strengths and weaknesses, developing personal goals, being assertive (meaning standing up for yourself), and making decisions. Self-advocacy also means communicating your needs and making decisions about the supports necessary to meet those needs (Martin Huber-Marshall, & Maxon, 1993; Stodden, 2000).
Here are other self-advocacy Resources available to you. This is NOT an exhaustive list. You will be able to find your own resources as well, check it out, join an online support group, but begin by advocating for yourself or a loved one or friend.