Individual and Systemic Advocacy

Individual and Systemic Advocacy

VALID is funded by the Victorian State Government as the peak state-wide advocacy body representing and supporting adult (18+) Victorians with an intellectual disability.

The VALID Advocacy Service is designed to protect and defend the human rights of people with an intellectual disability, and to champion their rights as citizens to ensure:

  • Community Living
  • Choice
  • Respect
  • Community Participation
  • Self-determination

VALID's Individual Advocacy support is offered on a short term basis. We assist people with all kinds of issues and particularly those who don't have access to a more local advocacy service. Examples of specific issues or challenges people may seek advocacy support may include:

  • Difficulties with community-based programs
  • Access to or issues within disability accommodation services
  • Issues regarding disability respite services
  • Concerns about or working better with disability staff support
  • The Department of Health & Human Services
  • Linking with or accessing suitable healthcare facilities
  • NDIS matters

We also support people when registering complaints with the Disability Services Commissioner or working with the Office of the Public Advocate regarding Administration and Guardianship matters.

Do you meet our criteria?

  1. A client must be an adult (ie. over the age of 18).
  2. A client must have an intellectual disability (see definition at the bottom of page)
  3. A client must be eligible for or in receipt of disability support services.


VALID's Individual Advocacy Program is currently funded to assist 50 new clients per quarter. The Advocacy Coordinator is in charge of assessing cases and assigning them accordingly, depending on the workload at the time of intake. Where clients do not meet our criteria a referral will be made when and where necessary.

People under the age of 18 will be typically referred to: The Association for Children with Disabilities  or Youth Disability Advocacy Service.

All legal advice or support in court matters will typically be referred to: Villamanta Disability Rights Legal Services. (03) 5227 3338 or Toll Free on 1800 014 111. Please note that Villamanta are based in Geelong, but are available to assist with court matters based in and around the City of Melbourne when possible.

For further information about our policies and guidelines please click here.

Advocacy Method

Direct Support

Standing Behind 
Providing advice and guidance to support people to assert their rights, recognise responsibilities and achieve their goals.

Standing Beside 
Working alongside people to assist them in raising and addressing their issues effectively.

Standing Before 
Providing representation to defend and promote the person's rights and interests.

Indirect Support

Family Advocacy

VALID provides advice and assistance to support the natural role played by families advocating for a family member with a disability. However, we do not advocate for the needs of the family itself.

Systemic Advocacy

VALID's systemic advocacy strives to empower people with a disability to:

  • Exercise their human rights and citizenship status within their local communities.
  • Inform and influence the policies and practices of disability service agencies, governments and other authorities.
  • Have control and influence over the decisions and choices which affect their lives.
  • Influence public understanding and attitudes.

To maximize its systemic influence, VALiD works collaboratively within a range of networks, alliances, advisory groups and representative bodies. VALiD is currently:

Positions and Submissions

VALID has declared position statements in relation to a wide range of issues, including the following:

Definition of Intellectual Disability From the 2006 Disability Act, intellectual disability is defined as the concurrent existence of; (a) significant sub-average general intellectual functioning; and (b) significant deficits in adaptive behaviour - each of which became manifest before the age of 18 years.