A PRUDHOE youth club has come up with an ingenious way of raising money for NHS charities during the coronavirus lockdown.

Happy Faces is a volunteer-led youth club, based in Prudhoe which provides activities for around 30 children.

The community group aims to allow children who have a learning need or caring responsibility to feel socially included.

This year they were due to take the children on trips to Cadbury World and Chester Zoo, but the trip had to be postponed due to Covid-19.

Instead, the club launched an exercise challenge, with the aim of getting the kids to walk, run, cycle, or do any exercise they could to reach the a total of 784km – the distance their trip would have been.

Supporters have then been encouraged to donate to NHS charities.

Founder Amanda Carr said: “Exercise is good for the children’s mental health, so we decided to challenge them to do the distance.

“People have sent in the exercise they’ve done and we’ve kept a tally.

“We were due to go on March 28, but lockdown started five days before that.

“It helps the parents and gets them out doing exercise – some of the children are too scared to exercise in the community, so they’ve done things like bounced on the trampoline or played football.”

Happy Faces last met on March 16, when the Prime Minister announced restrictions would be put on large gatherings.

However, the club has still found ways to bring the children together.

Amanda continued: “We’re doing a Happy Faces meeting every Monday on Zoom so the children can see each other’s faces.

“We’re also doing one on Wednesdays so parents can see each other and have a cup of coffee together. We just have to keep plodding on.”