Thursday, July 2, 2015

ADOS...Attention Deficit OH SHINY!
Courtesy Flickr Cambodia4Kids
Today I am looking at the “job” of advocacy: what words are used to describe advocacy jobs, what are the qualifications, and what are the requirements.  In the process of looking at the gazillions (actually I got to page 5 of the job listings before being inspired to write) of available jobs in advocacy, I found that there are many organizations that provide advocacy for their own causes. Among these causes for advocacy there is a concentration on young people, homeless people, and voters.  There is a severe lack in my discovery today, in the area of providing resources and advocacy for individuals who do not fit a singular category.  The people I want to advocate for always fall into multiple categories.
Courtesey Flickr OEA-OAS 
People I have advocated for need whole-life-spectrum resources. The breast cancer patient who needs to know how to pay for medical care, also needs to know how to structure their finances to optimize their best position for financial support. The Alzheimer’s patient who needs to be protected from wandering, also needs support from the constant physical presence of multiple care givers; the caregivers also need support. The mental health patient who needs to protect their own rights in a crisis, also needs to protect the rights of their family members’ to participate in their medical and financial care.
Courtesy Wesley Fryer
Sure there is NAMI, and there are many associations concerned with Alzheimer’s and breast cancer. But I have yet to find an organization that is concerned with whole-life-advocacy, other than departments of social services which connect several different resources.  However, their system is complicated and often always, my clients need advocacy to negotiate that system. But I don’t want to be a social worker in the system of county social services and welfare; I want to make that system user friendly for my clients.

As I continue to look at advocacy from the perspective of educational requirements I see three avenues: law, sociology/medical licenses, and experience. I don’t want to do what is being done; I want to do what is not yet being done. I need to find a balance between understanding and supplying what others expect and what I want them to see.

I get to create my own requirements and I get to decide which education will be most supportive for my work.  However, I need to continue this avenue of research from the perspective of credibility.
ADOS (Attention Deficit OH SHINY!) ALERT
OMG, look what I found!
And look what else I found! 

NOW I’m really excited!  UC Berkeley is my alma mater. The helps with business planning and supplies and financing! The masterlist includes educational programs, events, organizations, and more, more, more!  WOOOOOT!

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Thank you so much for taking the time to read my thoughts!