New facility means Red Cross will offer more

Philip Astle, SCAS chief operating officer and, right, Paul Jefferies, assistant
director of operations

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A CRISIS centre run by the British Red Cross has been officially opened.

Staff and volunteers who provide services to hundreds of vulnerable people in the area celebrated the opening of the office in Commercial Road, Portsmouth.

(left to right) Colin Brown operations Director for Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and Surrey, Wang Hai jing The Vice-President of the Red Cross Society of China, The Earl of Portsmouth Quentin Wallop with The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth Cllr. Lynne Stagg at the new premises''Picture: Malcolm Wells (131793-9978)

(left to right) Colin Brown operations Director for Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and Surrey, Wang Hai jing The Vice-President of the Red Cross Society of China, The Earl of Portsmouth Quentin Wallop with The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth Cllr. Lynne Stagg at the new premises''Picture: Malcolm Wells (131793-9978)

They were joined by Quentin Wallop, the 10th Earl of Portsmouth and president of the Red Cross in Hampshire, and also a delegation from the Red Cross in China.

The charity moved to the premises this year. It is also the main base for services operating across Hampshire, Surrey and Isle of Wight.

Staff previously based in Winchester, and offices in All Saints Church, Portsmouth, moved into the premises, which offer more space and much-improved facilities.

A drop-in centre for vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers will continue to operate from All Saints Church, in Commercial Road, Portsmouth.

Sue Best, area support manager at the Red Cross, said: ‘It’s great our staff and volunteers now have a nice, bright, modern building to work in and to grow our services in Portsmouth and surrounding areas.

‘The new office is available to our group of volunteers, who provide first aid for events, and also do lots of fundraising for us.

‘It has fantastic training facilities for all our staff and volunteers to use but will also help us increase our first aid training with members of the public and other organisations.’

Staff and volunteers who run services will be on hand to offer information and advice on the work of the Red Cross.

This includes short-term care in the home for adults recovering from illness or a stay in hospital, first aid training courses and first aiders for public events, emergency support for people facing crises such as house fires, floods or evacuations, humanitarian education, therapeutic care, refugee services and international tracing and messaging to help reunite separated loved ones.

To find out more, call 0845 054 7222, or visit redcross.org.uk.