Addiction, Health, Behaviour Change | CGL

Speak Out! - East Sussex

young person in wheelchair texting


Poster of a boy holding a photoWelcome to the East Sussex Independent Visiting and Independent Advocacy Service.

We are a friendly and non-judgemental team, and offer support and advice to ’looked after’ children and young people, children and young people who receive other ESCC services and wish to make a complaint these services, and children and young people who would like support in meetings that are held for and about them, including Child Protection Case Conferences and LAC reviews. We are completely independent and are not linked to Social Services. However, we do get many of our referrals from them, but only with the consent and agreement of children and young people who may wish to have our service.

We are flexible and responsive and will return any calls to our helpline within 24 hours, as long as it is safe to do so. If your call is an emergency please call 999 as this team does not offer an emergency service.

How to contact us

We always welcome new clients, so please get in touch if you or someone else is interested in accessing the service or you’d just like to ask some questions.  Please call 0300 303 9649 if you are a child or young person who wants to know more about the service or to self-refer. Alternatively, you can email the team on or


We accept referrals from children, young people and professionals. If you are a professional please ensure that the child or young person has consented to the referral.

Click here for more information on our secure referral process. 

If you are a professional who wants to know more about the service please call 0300 303 9649, or email the team on or Please send any referrals securely, and contact us if you have any queries about sending a secure referral.  

CGL's Speak Out! Independent Advocacy & Independent Visitor Service offers:

  • Independent Advocacy. CGL Advocates work for you, not East Sussex County Council or Social Workers. We offer free and confidential support to children and young people who have an East Sussex Social Worker.
  • Independent Visitors (IVs) – CGL IVs are people who give their time to befriend and support children and young people who are 'looked after' in foster care or residential care.

CGL Advocates support:

  • Children and young people in meetings like Child Protection Conferences and LAC reviews, to have their wishes and feelings listened to and taken into account
  • Children and young people to influence decisions made about them by professionals
  • Children and young people who are looked after in residential care with regular visits to residential and secure units in East Sussex
  • Children and young people to make a complaint about the service they are receiving

CGL Independent Visitors:

  • Visit children and young people who are looked after by East Sussex on a monthly basis to offer the support and advice of an independent and trusted adult who has no ‘agenda’
  • Offer fun activities away from your placement
  • Offer support in LAC reviews and other important meetings for and about the young person.

What do our service users say about us?

“I feel safer than I did. I would use Speak Out again.”

Speak Out! service user

"They (the Advocate) helped with contact arrangements. I felt better at school. I would recommend (the service) to a friend"

Speak Out! service user

Can’t make your appointment?

Please call or text us on 0300 303 9649 as soon as you can when you know you can’t make an appointment, and we’ll arrange another appointment with you.

If your call is outside of the service opening hours please leave us a message and we will get back in touch with you to arrange a more suitable date and time. 

Monday - Friday: 8am - 8pm
Saturday: 10am - 4pm