A DUO dubbed the 'Hippy Hikers' will travel to the Amazon rainforest as part of a conservation project.

Samantha Todd, of Wylam, and Freddie Matthews, of Prudhoe, will volunteer in Peru with International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ) for four weeks in July.

IVHQ help volunteers find affordable, abroad opportunities in sectors such as teaching, medicine and sport.

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Samantha and Freddie met at a craft fair where both were showcasing their small businesses. The friends have backgrounds in land management, archaeology and wildlife, and a passion for the outdoors and adventure.

They said: "This is an off-the-beaten track, life-changing adventure in a remote part of the world that we would never get the chance to experience otherwise.

"It’s a first-hand opportunity to work within a broadleaf tropical rainforest, which holds the largest selection of flora and fauna in the world.

"This project will allow us to help the local communities of the Amazon to manage and maintain their environment and support their local economy, as it is run by locals.

"Some of the tasks we will undertake include reforestation, trail conservation, animal inventories and research projects."

They added: "By volunteering with IVHQ on this project, we will be making a small contribution to the United Nations' sustainable development goal on climate action. It's important to act now as climate change affects everyone, everywhere.

"Global warming is changing our environment at a fast rate and carbon dioxide levels have risen.

"The plants and trees in the Amazon jungle play a critical role in regulating the global climate.

"This project will also help Sam develop her career goals in conservation. She is currently doing a college course in land and wildlife management at Houghall College in Durham. She hopes she can use what she learns in the Amazon to educate, conserve nature, and find sustainable solutions to use in her conservation work and volunteering in the UK."

Samantha and Freddie need to raise £5,000 to cover fees, flights and visa costs for the trip.

They plan to hold raffles, art sales and take part in sponsored challenges, including a 12-hour litter pick on Earth Day.

To donate, visit: https://www.fundmytravel.com/campaign/GPMenbMTNJ