Self Directed Support Advocacy

What is Self-Directed Support (SDS)

Anyone requiring support for themselves/others and meeting eligibility criteria can now choose how support is delivered from four options:

Option 1 A Direct Payment

When the payment is made direct and you organise support yourself

Option 2 – An Individual Service Fund

When you choose and direct your support and the CnES or another organisation arranges it all and handles the finances

Option 3 – CnES organised

When the CnES organises your care from their staff and from their preferred providers

Option 4 – A Combination

A combination of any of the above

What is the Advocacy Western Isles Self-Directed Support (SDS) Advocacy Service

As part of Advocacy Western Isle, this is independent advocacy which is a way to help people have a stronger voice and have as much control as possible over their lives.

This service will provide Self-Directed Support (SDS) Advocacy for social care users and carers (advocacy partners) who require independent support to access self-directed support.

SDS Advocacy Workers will support advocacy partners from deciding that they need support and preparing for assessment, to implementing and reviewing the final plan.

This will enable advocacy partners to make more informed choices about personal outcomes and take greater control of their care/the care of others.

The service will be provided to advocacy partners even if they do not meet the local authority eligibility criteria and therefore do not have a social care budget.  Support will be given to explore rights further with any issues around care and support.

Advocacy Workers will be able to give:

  • Information about rights to self-directed support
  • Support through the care assessment process including preparation for Social Work assessments to identify personal outcomes they want to achieve
  • Support to understand and choose the self-directed support option that may suit them, helping them to think creatively and plan flexibly to achieve personal outcomes
  • Support to navigate all elements of self-directed support, such as advertising, recruitment, drawing up contracts, understanding legal obligations, completing local authority returns, accessing community-based services and financial information such as managing a budget or a payroll service . Advocacy Western Isles will not be able to provide support, eg, brokerage, the Advocacy Worker will be able to signpost support and give help to access it
  • Support to put measures/plans in place to manage a funded social care package and sustain the choices they have made
  • Support for any issues that may arise

Where will the service be provided?

The service will be provided throughout the Western Isles with Advocacy Workers based in Uist covering the Uists and Barra and in Lewis covering Lewis and Harris.

Who will be able to access the service?

Any Social care user/Carer who lives in the Western Isles, including but not restricted to:

  • Older people
  • People with dementia
  • People with learning disabilities
  • People with physical disabilities
  • Parent/carers of children, including those with severe and complex needs and additional support needs
  • People living with long-term conditions such as strokes, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, people needing palliative care and people with sensory impairments

Who will be able to make referrals?

  • Self-referrals
  • Family members/Carers
  • Statutory Bodies
  • Third Sector, including AWI
  • Health
  • Other professionals 

How will support to advocacy partners be given?

  • Primarily one-to-one
  • Group sessions if there is demand
  • An enquiry service
  • Drop-in sessions
  • An information point
  • Workshops to raise awareness, particularly in rural/remote parts of the island


SIAA Leaflet
SIAA Booklet
AWI generic leaflet