Our mission is to provide protection and advocacy for those who experience developmental disabilities in the Macon/Bibb County area. We know that the presence of a caring person in the life of someone who is isolated and at-risk for neglect and abuse is the best possible way to keep our neighbors with disabilities safe and a part of community life. We do this by inviting local citizens into a wide range of responsible personal relationships with people whose lives are diminished because of prejudice toward disability. There are many ways that a citizen can become involved in citizen advocacy, either by creating a relationship with a person who experiences disability directly (as an advocate) or in a variety of other ways. Some examples of citizen advocate roles include:
to vigorously represent a person’s best interests and to help them acquire necessary services and supports.
to begin an ongoing, hopefully life long relationship that may develop into a true friendship over time.
to stand with a person during good times and bad times.
to evaluate and hold human service organizations accountable for their actions.
to offer guidance, affirmation, and direction through your presence, personal example, and advice.
to arrange for a person to take advantage of new or better opportunities in our community in work, education, civic involvement, neighborhood involvement, or leisure.
Red Tape Cutter
to help cut through policies and procedures that can sometimes overwhelm.
to assume responsibility of a person’s finances and to help the person with planning a monthly budget and saving for the future.
to provide a forever family.
to assume court-sanctioned responsibility for a person’s major personal or financial decisions.
Other Ways to be a Part of Citizen Advocacy
A Crisis Advocate will respond to and be present for a protégé immediately during a crisis, on a short term basis until the crisis has passed and a long term advocate can be recruited, oriented and matched.
An Advocate Associate will offer his/her skills, talents, expertise, and influence to a citizen advocate who is advocating for his or her protégé. Advocate associates are needed in the areas of networking, political savvy, law, journalism, financial planning, housing, employment, medical, and education.
A Board Member will share the responsibility with other board members of advancing the mission and sustaining the presence of Citizen Advocacy in the Bibb County area. The board is a governing, policymaking board which ultimately holds responsibility for the success of Citizen Advocacy in the community. Board members are expected to be active, participating, informed, working members.
Committee Members serve on a committee formed by the board, but are not a director of the board. A person may serve on one or more committees, including public relations, fundraising, Citizen Advocacy, or other ad hoc committees. A committee member may also focus on a specific sector of the community, such as business, labor, Churches, etc.
A Connector is a person who agrees to assist the Coordinator in connecting with potential advocates through their personal and/or professional contacts. A Connector listens to a protege’s story and connects the Coordinator with people in their circles who possess the qualities that the Coordinator is seeking in an advocate. A Connector might also help to connect the Coordinator with others who might be interested in learning about Citizen Advocacy.
A Financial Sponsor gives financial support to sustain Citizen Advocacy in the Bibb County area, either personally or professionally. Such support is purely voluntary.