Information, advice and advocacy

Sometimes it helps to have someone who can speak on your behalf and represent your interests.

Often people take a friend or family member to important meetings, or there are organisations that can help provide someone.  They can help you to get your views or wishes across. A person who speaks up on your behalf in this way is called an advocate.

An advocate can:

  • listen to you
  • help you to plan any action you may need or wish to take
  • write letters and make telephone calls with you, or for you
  • ensure your views are heard by attending meetings/reviews with you
  • obtain information for you, or put you in touch with someone who can
  • spend time with you preparing for meetings
  • investigate alternative sources of support
  • increase communication levels between yourself and others
  • find out what your rights are
  • liaise with relevant agencies.

Local centres

Free independent advocacy services are available to help you express your views and concerns.  These centres usually offer free and confidential information and advice on a variety of issues including:

  • legal
  • money matters
  • housing matters
  • consumer
  • employment
  • welfare benefits.

National groups and organisations

Age UK

Charity concerned with the needs and aspirations of older people. Information line 0800 169 6565

Alzheimer's Society

Our helpline is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm extending to 8pm on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday; Saturday to Sunday from 10am-4pm, and can be reached on 0300 222 1122.

Our local offices offer face-to-face help, advice and support to people with dementia and their families and carers.

Citizens Advice 

See below for specific contact details of bureaux within Oxfordshire

Contact the Elderly

Seeks to reduce isolation for older people who live alone, by providing social occasions such as monthly tea parties. Free phone 0800 716543

Oxfordshire groups and organisations

Age UK Oxfordshire

Oxfordshire, City and County
St Edmunds House, 39 West Street, Abingdon OX14 5BW
Tel: 0345 450 1276

Asylum Welcome

Asylum Welcome provides free, confidential information, help and guidance for refugees, asylum seekers and immigration detainees in Oxford and Oxfordshire. We are an independent charity - not a government agency. Telephone 01865 722082.

Getting Heard: Cancer, Older People and Advocacy project

One to one support from a Macmillan trained volunteer for anyone aged 50+ affected by cancer. Volunteers can accompany people to medical appointments or assist with getting practical help.
To find out more please contact Getting Heard: Telephone: 01865 230203 Email:

Volunteer advocates can support people to make sure their voice is heard and their wishes are known on a wide range of issues, including getting access to the right services, housing issues, finance and employment issues or making a complaint. Volunteers support people to write letters, make telephone calls, research information, attend meetings and appointments.

Getting Heard, the phone number 0300 343 5718 and Email:

Getting Heard also runs the Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy (IMCA) service and the Independent Care Act Advocacy (ICCA) service. To find out more please contact Oxfordshire Advocacy: Telephone: 0300 343 5718  Email:

Barton Neighbourhood Centre
Headington, OX3 9LS

Oxfordshire Carers' Forum

Tel: 01235 520440

Oxfordshire Chinese Community and Advice Centre

Tel: 01865 204188

The Relatives and Residents Association advice line

Tel 020 7359 3136

North Oxfordshire Groups and Organisations

Citizens Advice

Tel: 08444 111 444

Oxford City Groups and organisations

Agnes Smith Advice Centre, 96 Blackbird Leys Road, Oxford OX4 5HS
Tel: 01865 770206 (available for residents of Blackbird Leys)

Citizens Advice

Tel: 08444 111 444

Barton Advice Centre

Underhill Circus, Oxford OX3 9LS
Tel:01865 744152 (available for the residents of Barton and Headington)

Rosehill and Donnington Advice Centre

The Cabin, The Oval, Rose Hill, Oxford OX4 4SF
Tel: 01865 438634 (available for the residents of Rose Hill, Iffley, Littlemore, New Hinksey, Cowley and Donnington)

South Oxfordshire groups and organisations

Berinsfield Information Centre, 39 Fane Drive, Berinsfield.
Tel:01865 340313

Citizens Advice

Tel: 08444 111 444

The Abingdon Bridge

Young People aged 13-25 information and support
Tel: 01235 522375

West Oxfordshire groups and organisations

Age UK Chipping Norton

Tel: 01608 643458

Citizens Advice

Tel: 08444 111 444
Chipping Norton & Witney

Independent Advice Centre Wantage

16 Market Place Wantage Oxon OX12 8AE 01235 765348

Community advocates

Chinese: 01865 456619 or 456622
Indian and Pakistani women: 01865 456622
Bangladeshi women: 01865 456623
Travellers: 01869 325796
Caribbean: 01865 456618

Legal advice

The Community Legal Service Fund helps people who cannot afford legal services as long as they meet certain conditions. The scheme, which replaced Legal Aid, is run by the Legal Services Commission. A solicitor or adviser will tell you if you qualify for help.

Many organisations, such as Citizens Advice Bureaux and law centres, offer a free service. It is possible that you may have to pay for some charges, such as photocopying, to cover the organisation's costs.


Some organisations, including solicitors, offer a set period (often 30 minutes) of initial free advice. For example, the Accident Line scheme offers a free initial interview with a solicitor for those who have suffered a personal injury because of an accident.

For more details of Accident Line you can call their free telephone helpline on 0500 192939.


Please note: The organisations listed on this page are not endorsed or recommended by Oxfordshire County Council and the contact details are provided for information only.

Please feel free to contact any of the organisations on this fact sheet yourself. If required, Carers Oxfordshire can also help you further. You can contact them on 0345 050 7666, Monday to Thursday 08:30-17:00, Friday 08:30-16:00

Information links

Carers Trust

Help, advice, online community

NHS Choices

Guidance, help and support. Carers Direct helpline on 0300 123 1053 

Oxfordshire County Council

Social and health care information