There are four different ways to get advocacy training: formal post-secondary education, specialist training programs, online learning and internship programs. The term "advocacy" refers to the process of trying to influence the outcome of issues that have impact on society. In general, advocacy occurs when people use a combination of political, economic and legal challenges to influence public opinion. In many cases, the issues that attract advocacy groups affect marginalized communities, such as the poor and children.
In Scotland, Scandinavia, Israel and the Netherlands, advocacy training is required to become a lawyer or advocate. In these countries, you must complete an undergraduate degree in order to qualify for admissions to advocacy training. In other countries, advocacy training is primarily intended for people who are interested in political science and related causes.
The first step required to get advocacy training is to find an accredited institute that offers this type of program. Look at universities with a large political science department or at private institutes. There are two types of advocacy programs: domestic and international.
Domestic advocacy training programs focus on political issues, organizing an effective grassroots campaign, organizing nonprofit groups and communication strategies. The most common areas for domestic advocacy are health care, education and environmental causes. People who are interested in this type of training often are passionately involved in their area of interest, and they use the skills learned to work more effectively for a cause.
Advocacy training programs focused on international issues typically address the challenges of working in the third world, fundraising and project management. This type of work is growing in popularity as more people want to dedicate their efforts to improve the living and working conditions around the world. Many people who are interested in this type of work have completed training in international business, political science or the humanities.
People who are working full-time but are interested in completing advocacy training can find online courses or programs through many advocacy agencies. These courses are available via the Internet. Students log into a website and gain access to course assignments, reading material and instructor lectures. In many courses, group discussions and projects are managed via the Internet, allowing students to study from home.
Some international advocacy agencies provide internship training programs. These typically are given to students who volunteer for a specific period of time. Upon successful completion of the training program, he or she can be assigned to a range of different countries with active programs.