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A Stronger Future Together

4th May 2016

METRO Charity and Positive Parenting and Children (PPC) formally merged today.

"After many months of discussion and due diligence processes, the METRO Board are agreed that this is in the absolute best interest for service users, commissioners and staff and volunteer teams of both charities.", Dan McDonald, METRO Chair of Trustees.

"The decision to merge is never one to be taken lightly, but myself and the rest of the PPC Board are clear that merging ensures the strongest position for the continued delivery of our vital support to families living with and affected by HIV." Gwen Bryan, PPC Chair of Trustees.

"Both PPC and METRO are long standing charities that have side-by-side fought stigma, embraced equality and diversity and lived through the HIV epidemic, working across London boroughs with the highest prevalence of HIV in the UK.", Elaine Pearson, PPC Interim Executive Director.

The merge between our two charities will see services running as usual, with the PPC team continuing to operate from their current base in Brixton. Expertise across our newly formed team will be maximised in developing an integrated offer within METRO's HIV domain and across our Sexual & Reproductive Health, Community, Mental Health, and Youth domains.

"We have already been working so closely in the lead up to the merger, and I am really looking forward to welcoming everyone at PPC into the METRO family. I am excited see the merge really bear fruit in offering an even better and more diverse and well-rounded package of support options to families living with and affected by HIV.", Dr Greg Ussher, METRO CEO.

Dr Ussher continued, "We have recently seen HIV support services completely defunded in some London boroughs, and consultations are under way in Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham which could lead to defunding of HIV support services in these boroughs. Cuts such as these continue to have a significant impact on those living with HIV, and on organisations working with them, I am sure this merge provides the best opportunity to build a stronger future together."

Three Trustees from PPC will be standing for election, by our newly integrated team, to the METRO Board at our AGM on Thursday 12th May.

PPC and METRO combined employ over 90 staff with 80 volunteers, operating from 7 locations across London and the South East and have over 60 years' experience working in London with diverse communities impacted by HIV.

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Peter- First Point

I felt so relieved to have a named First Point worker who I can call if I need to be referred to a particular service.

Kwasi - Mentoring

During the 6 month programme, I developed a close relationship with my mentor. Knowing that I would have to talk to him honestly about what I did in the previous 2 weeks somehow forced me to be safe every time I had an encounter.

Ebere - First Point

I wish this service was around when I was newly diagnosed. I felt my world had fallen apart around me and I didn't know which way to turn for support. You are offering a very valuable service.

Joe - Mentoring

The programme had such an impact on my life that I decided to come on board as a volunteer mentor!

Sarah - Counselling

The help and understanding I experienced from everyone I came into contact with whilst using the Metroís services was amazing.

Michael - Counselling

I gained a huge amount of help from the counselling service and would like to thank the service for offering so much support.

Simon - Mentoring

By discussing things at such an intimate level with my mentor, I really came face to face with some of the reasons why I was taking chances before.

Abimbola- First Point

It has been a long time since I felt that someone actually listened to me.

Joan - First Point

Thank you so much for taking time to listen to me and truly understand how I am feeling. This is the only appointment I've had regarding HIV that didnít feel rushed.

David - Counselling

Outstanding people. Outstanding service. Outstanding counselling. Truly something that has allowed me to turn my life around.

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