Lisa Mellish is the new Red Cross first aid coordinator for Nelson/Marlborough. Photo: Kate Russell.

Red Cross broadens first aid courses


Lisa Mellish has always had a passion to save lives, and now she is helping more Nelsonians to do the same by offering more first aid courses in the region.

New Zealand Red Cross has recently welcomed Lisa as their training coordinator for Nelson and Marlborough, and team leader for the Nelson New Zealand Red Cross Disaster Welfare Support Team.

Born and bred in Havelock she spent time overseas, 12 years on the West Coast, and moved to Nelson three years ago.

From the army, running emergency management training and courses, working as an ambulance officer, Civil Defence and for Red Cross as the West Coast Disaster Welfare Support Team where she was deployed to the Christchurch earthquakes and Pike River Mine disaster – Lisa has an impressive background.

“And now I’ve come back to Red Cross into this role and I’m so excited – things have been a bit sleepy here over the last few months, so watch this space.”

She says Nelson is currently “very limited” in what it offers in the way of first aid and will be introducing new first aid courses next year.

One of them will be outdoor first aid – a course she thinks there is a “real need for” in the region.

“I think it’s important – especially in the Tasman area.”

She’ll also be introducing pre-hospital emergency care and psychological first aid, which is a ‘best practice’ approach to providing initial emotional and practical support to someone who has experienced a traumatic event.

“It builds organisational and community resilience and people’s capacity to respond well to traumatic events and is recommended for anyone who may have a role in supporting staff, colleagues, community members or whanau,” she says.

“My aim is to broaden the scope of what’s available – there is so much more we can offer, and will offer, moving forward.”

Lisa says other courses can also be tailored to meet people’s needs, such as work place first aid, first aid for new mothers, sports first aid, or first aid for forestry groups, schools and clubs.

“I’ve had people come in with all sorts of needs, but the bottom line is helping people and educating them in first aid.”

To find out more information on Red Cross first aid courses in Nelson, go to