Improve Lives as a Community Advocate
May 29, 2014
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A community advocate shares knowledge with those in need, providing them with information that inspires people to make a difference in their lives. And if you're looking to make a difference in your own, this field may be for you.
Part of community advocacy means creating new services and programs for any age, and that includes developing partnerships with others to change regulations that hinder or disadvantage a particular group. You'll be the voice for others, and your main goal is to give these individuals the resources they need to improve their lives.
Earning your degree in legal studies paves the way for you to work as a community advocate in your community. When you graduate, there are many work settings and career options available to you. Here's a look at just a few.
Provide Legal References and Resources
As an advocate for others, you need to be educated and well versed in the legal aspect of social issues. With your degree, you'll be able to help clients through a variety of issues, including:
- where to get medical attention
- how to pay for prescriptions or health-related needs
- how to apply for disability or medical assistance
- family law concerns
- how to find safe and affordable housing
- tutoring or life skills coaching
- finding resources for people with disabilities or language barriers
You're a liaison between underprivileged individuals and the people who specialize in their issues. You will be in direct communication with law enforcement, social workers, attorneys and teachers who can help you find a resolution to the problems your clients face.
Speak to Others About Issues in the Community
If there is strong need in a certain area within your community, you'll communicate with others for assistance on coming to a solution. Areas of concern may be:
- human trafficking
- food pantries
- after-school programs
- parole programs
This could mean meeting with city officials or other local, state or federal advisers to present the complaints brought to you. Be ready to present issues in front of other people, and understand the laws and ethics behind each step.
Spearhead Campaigns and Fundraisers
Not only do community advocates lend their voice for disability or low-income awareness, they are often responsible for fund raising as well. You'll solicit new volunteers and connect them with local business people, reach out to others through campaign drives, apply for grants and funding, and create awareness for new and existing programs.
A diverse and rewarding career, community advocacy emphasizes the creation of systematic solutions while helping others at the same time.
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