Download this National Kids As Self Advocates Document (pdf: 60K | doc: 107K)

Advocacy Tips

Advocacy is speaking out on an issue that concerns you.  This can mean talking to a policymaker about a law, talking to your teachers about your IEP or talking with your parents about something you want to do.

How to Talk To Someone
Have a very good idea of what you want and why you want it:

Some Terms Used in Advocacy:


Supporting Your Issue
In order to advocate for yourself (being a self advocate) or your community (being a community advocate), you will need information (facts, research) to show why your ideas are good and how they have worked for others.
Some places to find good information are:

Keep Track of Information
It’s important as an advocate to keep track of what steps you take (Step1: talk to person. Step 2: do research and talk to those with knowledge, find out facts and ideas for what you want. Step 3: write a letter explaining the issue and what you need).   
Some things to track:

Follow Up
Now that you have identified (chosen) your issue, done your research, made your contacts and have tracked what happened, you may feel like you have done all you can do.  NOT YET!  Following up is critical.  Many times, the people you are trying to reach are very busy.  They need to be reminded to act upon your request and to be reminded about how much you care about this subject.  Some ways you can follow up:


WrightsLaw provides parents, advocates, educators, and attorneys with accurate, up-to-date information about special education law and advocacy so they can make change.  See more advocacy tips and links on their website,

Protection & Advocacy, Inc. works to advance the human and legal rights for people with disabilities.  Their advocacy tip sheet was written for parents, but the tips can apply to anyone.  See their tip sheet at