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Older Citizens Advocacy York (OCAY)

OCAY is a free, independent and confidential advocacy service helping older citizens in York to have a voice in the issues that concern them by providing information, liaising with others on behalf of them, and ensuring that they understand what is involved. We primarily work through volunteer advocates supported by our staff team.

12 April 2018
Yorkshire and Humber
Voluntary Sector
Local Alliances:
York Dementia Action Alliance

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists a number of outcomes that we are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

OCAY provides free, independent advocacy on a one-to-one basis for those struggling to engage with the services they need, or dealing with organisations/processes which have left them baffled, exhausted, or simply feeling unheard and unable to get their point of view across.

Many of our advocates are Dementia Friends and have a broad understanding of dementia and its effects on individuals.  We offer advocacy to people with dementia at all stages and ensure that their needs and views are represented.  We also offer training to a core group within our advocacy team in non-instructed advocacy as a means of providing more specialist support to those with dementia.

We offer advocacy support to carers of people with dementia. 

Through our support people with dementia are enabled to remain independent for longer as a a result of us supporting them to access services, maximise their incomes and make informed decisions. 


2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?

OCAY provides free, independent advocacy across an ever-increasing range of issues through trained volunteer advocates, with support from qualified advocates in the staff team. Given that we rely upon a volunteer team, all members of the team may be knowledgeable about dementia in its broadest terms, but not all will have an indepth understanding of the full extent of dementia and its impact on individuals.  We have limited resources to stretch across many of the issues which impact our clients.  This means we are challenged in providing the best training and support within each specialism which arises, dementia being a strong case in point.

2. Actions

  • Provide further training in impact of dementia on individuals to our advocacy team

    Introduce a training module on the impacts of dementia on individuals to enhance understanding and awareness for our team of advocates.  This will further develop their skill in working with those clients who are living with dementia.

  • Advocacy drop-ins

    We are developing a range of advocacy drop-ins through which we are reaching a wider cross section of the local community.  Within these we plan to offer access to our advocates in situ. This would provide an opportunity for those living with dementia and/or their carers to access our service more readily within their own locations across the city of York.  In addition we will offer non-instructed advocacy as appropriate.

    Being implemented