AN East Renfrewshire charity that offers free advice and support to the public is celebrating it 50th anniversary.

The Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) has been offering free, confidential and independent advice to people in Barrhead and around East Renfrewshire on an array of issues since 1971.

Teresa O’Hara, CAB manager for East Renfrewshire, told the Barrhead News: “It’s a great milestone, and I’m just so proud of all the staff and volunteers – past and present – who have done such a great job over all this time.

“Every one of them has been from the local community across East Renfrewshire – our Citizens Advice Bureau is truly a local service, run by local people, for local people.”

Teresa has been the manager at East Renfrewshire’s CAB, based in Barrhead’s Main Street, for 22 years.

“This place has changed so much since I started,” she said. “In those days it was all paper-based, and we didn’t have the technology we have these days. And I have to say, the CAB has moved really well with that technology. 

“Nowadays people can access our advice in person or by email, or phone.

“There are two things that haven’t changed – the first is the need for our service. We help numerous people every day, and many of them are in really dire situations.

“The second thing that hasn’t changed is the spirit of the team here. There is a great sense of dedication in the team. 

“For me, seeing someone come in with worry etched all over their face, and then seeing them leave with a smile and relief after we’ve begun helping them deal with their problems – that’s what it’s all about.”