East Durham College Hairdressing and Barbering students helping soldiers and families ready for christmas party

Barbering and Hairdressing Students Help Out Deserving Clients

Thu, 2015-12-10 15:38

Students and staff from East Durham College hair and beauty departments have spent the day lending their skills to a well-deserved cause.

Ten students, along with lecturers, visited Phoenix House, the Help for Heroes recovery centre at Catterick Garrison, to help get soldiers and their families ready for the annual Christmas party with haircuts, shaves and styling.

The facility helps with the recovery of wounded British soldiers offering them unique courses and tailored support available to recovering serving personnel, veterans and their families helping them achieve their long-term goals and aspirations.

The team from Phoenix House contacted the department based at the college’s Peterlee campus to see if they would be able to help, and the team jumped at the chance to go and spend some time at the centre to help prepare the Band of Brothers and Band of Sisters ahead of their festivities.

The Band of Brothers refers to the injured and sick servicemen and women, whilst the Band of Sisters to those who support them such as their spouse, parents and children.

College barbering lecturer Alison Scattergood hailed the day as a fantastic opportunity for students to give back to these families who sacrifice themselves for us on a daily basis.

Alison said: “This was a fantastic opportunity for us, and one we were very proud to be offered.

“We visited last year and we jumped at the opportunity when we were invited back to the event.

“It’s always an amazing event to be involved in and there is a real buzz at Phoenix House, it’s a great facility.

“All the students worked really hard and we hope the ‘brothers’ and ‘sisters’ had a fantastic party.”

Band of Brother/Band of Sisters’ Regional Co-ordinator, Lucy Wray hailed the party as an important event on the Phoenix House calendar and praised the hard work put in by the students and staff who attended from East Durham College’s Salon.

Lucy said: “The hairdressers have worked so hard and been amazing with everyone who came through the door. Almost all the wounded, injured and sick – male and female – took the opportunity to have their hair done and have left with that little bit more confidence than when they arrived and a huge smile on their face!

“The Christmas Party is our way of bringing together Band of Brothers members who have been supported by the northern Help for Heroes Recovery Centre during the year.

“It provides them with an opportunity to meet each other and so widen their network of support among others who understand their situation or circumstance. But most of all, it is a great end to the year that really lifts their spirits.”

The centre was officially opened in September 2013 and features 50 en-suite bedrooms, a Support Hub enabling access to a wide range of welfare support, training, presentation and IT suites, a gymnasium with specialist equipment, a café and social areas.

For more information on Help for Heroes and the work they do please visit www.helpforheroes.org.uk.