North East politicians have hailed the launch of a mental health support service created in memory of a local woman.
Shirley’s Place this week announced the first of a number of services to be delivered by volunteer counsellors at its new Crimond base.
Peterhead mother-of-two Shirley McCombie took her own life last August and her family has since raised thousands of pounds in order to provide a dedicated mental health base.
They believed the closest dedicated unit, at Cornhill in Aberdeen, was too far away for people in need.
Scottish Conservative MP David Duguid and MSP Tom Mason visited the Crimond Medical Centre and Community Hub to thank organisers and volunteers for their dedication so far.
Mr Duguid said: “This is an excellent locally convened service which will hopefully fill a gap for people with mental health issues and perhaps even suicidal thoughts.
“We need to make sure that any remaining stigma, which stops people from coming forward, is removed.
“I have been closely involved with UK Government Ministers responsible for mental health policy and suicide prevention.
“I know that there is cross-party agreement on the need for this and there should be cross-government cooperation as well.”
Mr Mason added: “Shirley’s Space are doing very important work to support people who are struggling with mental health problems across the North East.
“Their new walk-in centre provides the opportunity to have a confidential, non-judgemental chat with one of their trained volunteers to discuss a route to potential help,” he continued.
“I truly wish Shirley’s Space the best as they continue to grow.”
Shirley’s Space anounced that a drop-in centre at the will commence on September 3 and will be open every Tuesday for six hours.
Then, a woman’s afternoon and evening events will follow the next day, and a men’s night on September 5.
A text service will be launched on September 13 while a website messenger service is set to follow from early October.