THREE new groups are being launched at The Welcome at Longridge offering support to people affected by bereavement, domestic abuse and financial hardship.

Dove Buddies is a new social group for local people affected by bereavement offering friendship, talks and activities led by local charity Dove Service.

The group will meet on the first Friday of the month from 10.30am to midday, and membership is free.

The Welcome manager Sarah Riley said: “We are also partnering without Cheshire Without Abuse (CWA) to launch a monthly clinic with one-to-one support sessions for people affected by domestic abuse.

“CWA has trained specialists who can provide emotional, financial and practical support, and the service is completely confidential.”

The first session is on Friday, September 27, and for more details or to book a one-to-one session please call 0300 123 5101.

Elle for Elle will be donating a free toiletry gift box to each person who comes along.

Sarah added: “We already work closely with Hope Central, Knutsford's local food bank run by a coalition of local churches across Cheshire East.

“We are pleased to announce that they are moving their weekly get together to The Welcome every Thursday from midday to 1.30pm.

“As well as lunch and fellowship, the group can also provide support with employment and managing your finances and is aimed to support people facing hardship.”

The first get together at The Welcome was held on Thursday.

A Hope Centre spokesman said: “The Hope Centre offer a warm and friendly atmosphere where anyone can find new friends and support through life’s ups and downs.

“We provide a light lunch and a chance to chat informally. There will be an encouraging ‘Thought for the Day’, an opportunity to get online to search for jobs with professional support and access to all the facilities of The Welcome.

“We are working to provide courses and support with issues such as money management, life skills and freedom from dependencies. Your thoughts and ideas will be very welcome.”

Founded in 1984 by Dr Linda Machin, a leading research fellow, the Dove Service is the only grief support charity in Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire, providing services to people in the community from the age of four up who are experiencing issues relating to bereavement, loss or life-changing illness.