As previously announced, a drafting group was created to continue the work started at the SIAA AGM & Safeguarding Independent Advocacy, where members worked to further develop the IA national outcomes.
The drafting group represents different models of advocacy across Scotland and will have several meetings to finish the framework, including an instance with the SIAA’s membership for further comment.
Graeme Reekie from Wren and Greyhound, who has extensive experience in organisational development, is supporting the group.
The group’s first meeting took place on January 26, and members discussed the first draft with Graeme’s suggestions, and started thinking about the implementation of the framework.
Independent Advocacy Outcomes Framework Drafting Group Meeting 1 key discussion points
- There is an expectation that there would be funding to facilitate external evaluation, however this is hardly available for IAOs.
- SIAA could develop a standardised programme for independent advocacy that would be consistent across the country.
- There could be a need to change the big headings on the current draft.
- Using a logic model for the framework.
- Thinking who this document is going to be for to determine the correct terminology.
- It is important to make the document readable.
- Adding a column for suggestions of where that evidence would come from.
Considering different models of advocacy
- IAOs that deliver different models of advocacy, that are not as prominent, want to make sure that the framework will be fit for purpose for formats of advocacy.
- Not all outcomes will apply to all the IA models.
- Collective advocacy should have specific outcomes as they would refer to a group rather than an individual.
- Need to reflect community group experiences that come from collective advocacy.
- There is a need to reflect in the outcomes the long-term relationship benefits found in citizen advocacy.
Vocabulary and wording
- IA has a responsibility to challenge commissioner’s language so that language is equal.
- Need for nuisance in the wording to include all advocacy models.
- Suggested change: “limited capacity” to something that is less deficit focus.
- Suggested change: “Advocacy partners are more able to express their views” to “Views being heard”. This would make it simpler and more appropriate for collective advocacy.
- Suggested change: using “people” instead of “advocacy partners”. If we use the term “people” collective advocacy is better included because “advocacy partners” seems more appropriate for individual advocacy.
Outcomes in general
- Some outcomes might be for the SIAA and not necessarily for IAOs.
- Some outcomes are only possible with more resources and higher budgets.
- There should be a mention that the indicators are suggestions or examples and that each IAO might have an alternative more appropriate for their practice that they can evidence instead. This would protect IAOs from commissioners that will see the Evaluation framework and not understand why the organisation is not doing what the framework indicates.
Outcomes for Service providers
- Should there be a set of outcomes for service providers?
- Need for clarification: are we talking about advocacy providers or service providers in the wider sense?
- Understanding the role of the SIAA with service providers.
Outcomes for Wider community
- Avoiding the term “Scottish citizens” as Scotland has people from all over the world, refugees, asylum seekers, etc. Use “people” instead.
- Outcomes should be achievable. Some of these outcomes might be too aspirational; IAOs could contribute to only some of them.
- It is important to include indicators for the different advocacy models.
- Rather than “wider community,” it could be called “our community”. IAOs would measure the difference IA brings to their communities. If there are enough IAOs measuring this, it would provide the bigger picture for Scotland.
- Advocacy map – SIAA could interview managers to gather information.
- SIAA could organise in-person sessions around Scotland where people can come together and think about how they are going to gather that information.
- Making reporting of outcomes a requirement of the SIAA membership.
- Documents to report should be easy to fill in and online, highlighting what the information will be used for.
- Considering the reporting time periods of IAOs to commissioners when SIAA asks for the advocacy map.
- Will SIAA contact Advocacy commissioners around the framework?
- Would IAOs need to submit evidence?