Siobhan and Sharon have known each other for 5 years. They call each other regularly, and meet up on a weekly basis to go shopping, visit the cinema or go for a meal. Neither Sharon or Siobhan feel that their partnership is a formal arrangement anymore, it is now a companionship.
Since their advocacy partnership started, Sharon has noticed that she has become more confident, happy and settled. She has been living in the community for the last 2 years with her fiancee 'Mark', who now also has his own advocate. Sharon has also become Chairwoman of Caerphilly People First. Her long-term aim is continue to live in the community and eventually get married and have a family. Siobhan has learnt a lot from being Sharon's advocate as she is studying to become a Social Worker.
Tracy and Lisa have known each other for 10 months. They call each other often, and meet up on a regular basis. Tracy lives in adult placement and works in a charity shop 3 days a week.
We asked Tracy and Lisa to tell us about their citizen advocacy partnership and what it means to them. Tracy said "Lisa has helped me with my confidence, she has helped me change my surname legally via the solicitors". Lisa said "I've enjoyed supporting Tracy, we are friends, we go out socially and regularly text one another. Tracy can contact me straight away if she needs me". Tracy said "I have big plans for the future, I would like to live independently and hopefully find a paid job. I would like to enrol in college so Lisa is going to help me find out about some courses". Lisa said "I am looking forward to helping Tracy and I may even enrol on a course myself!"