Guidance for Unpaid Carer Advocacy in Scotland

This document, endorsed by Scottish Government and COSLA provides guidance for advocacy professionals who are interested in or are currently undertaking advocacy work with unpaid carers in Scotland.

Evaluation and outcomes

It is important to build in processes for evaluation of the advocacy provided, measuring the delivery against recognised standards. To support evaluation, organisations and projects delivering advocacy should consider both internal and external evaluation.

The Scottish Government's Guide for Commissioners and the SIAA Principles and Standards recommends that an external evaluation should be commissioned every three years. When organisations are seeking funding to provide advocacy for carers an element for external evaluation should be built in. Consistency in approach and standards against which the advocacy is measured will help towards ensuring consistently high quality in the advocacy provided across Scotland.

The SIAA Evaluation Framework provides tools to allow the measurement of advocacy practice against the advocacy Principles. This can be used for both independent and non-independent provision. It should be noted, however, that some of the Standards within the Guide for Commissioners reflect Commissioners' statutory responsibility and differ from the SIAA Principles and Standards. Completion of the self-assessment tool should reflect and be measured against the relevant Standards applied in the commissioning of the service. Completion of the assessment annually can allow organisations to measure quality of provision and progress against previous years.

When considering measurement of outcomes it must be remembered that desired outcomes identified at the start of the advocacy process by the carer may not be achieved. This may be for a number of reasons; however this does not necessarily mean that advocacy outcomes have not been achieved.

Advocacy outcomes are likely to include:

  • being supported to make informed choices
  • having views and wishes heard and considered.
  • being involved in planning and decision making
  • feeling more able to speak up
  • having one's rights observed

To measure outcomes organisations should gather feedback from carers at the completion of the advocacy relationship. The feedback request should be designed to gather information on the carer's views on the advocacy outcomes. Such consultation will build evidence supporting proposals for on-going or increased provision of advocacy for carers.


Email: Peggy Winford

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