The newly-renovated building, which used to be the Caves de Bordeaux, is just across the road from the service’s former home at Holy Trinity Church.
Service chairman the Rev. Jon Honour said Guernsey Welfare had outgrown its space at the church with the number of food and household donations coming in and the limited hours the service could operate within the building.
‘Now Guernsey Welfare can be open much more frequently and expand all the areas in which it assists people.’
The primary aim of the Guernsey Welfare Service is to help people on low incomes. It offers a welfare office providing help to those struggling financially generally, but in particular to families with dependent children, with food bank items and vouchers for essential items including food, heating, children’s and household items.
Guernsey Welfare also offers short courses in a variety of life skills including budgeting and cooking and can tailor the advice to individuals.
It also assists with written and online paperwork including, but not limited to, job applications, Right to Work applications and job searches.
The service runs a parent empowerment programme for parents with young children in a group which meets weekly, and Guernsey Linking Lives, a befriending service for isolated older adults.
‘Whenever the building is open people can come in now. It is much more accessible and we will be here to help,’ Guernsey Welfare coordinator Sue Le Friec said.
‘We are providing a safe space for people, although we are very careful we are not allowing anyone to become dependent on the service and generally will assist those who need it around once a month – but, of course, we’d never turn anyone away.
‘We’d rather help someone who didn’t really need the help than miss someone who really did.’
The official opening is on Tuesday between 6 and 9pm. Anyone is welcome to attend.
n The centre is open every weekday. Go to www.guernseywelfare.com for specific times.