Youth club given a lottery boost

DELIGHTED: Coun Stephen Akers-Belcher says the money will fund an extra activity night at The Rif
DELIGHTED: Coun Stephen Akers-Belcher says the money will fund an extra activity night at The Rif

A YOUTH club that provides activities for dozens of youngsters every weekend has been given a £3,500 lottery boost.

Community leaders behind The Rifty youth club plan to use the cash injection from the Big Lottery to fund an extra activity night for youngsters in the Rift House area of Hartlepool.

Every Friday night up to 90 youngsters aged between eight and 18 descend on the club to enjoy a range of activities.

Bosses at the youth club say they will consult with youngsters before deciding which day the extra activity night will be held on.

It could be used to fund dance sessions or to give members the chance to try out their DJ skills on a set of decks.

Rift House ward councillor, Stephen Akers-Belcher, who helped set up The Rifty project, said: “The Rifty is a wonderful project and we are delighted to have been awarded this lottery funding.

“It has given us a big boost and the money will be used to fund an extra activity night.”

Coun Akers-Belcher added that both Cleveland Fire Brigade and Cleveland Police have praised the scheme for giving youngsters something to do.

The extra night is expected to start from September.

The Rifty youth club is open on Fridays between 5pm and 8pm with separate sessions for eight to 13-year-olds and 14 to 18-year-olds.

Activities include table tennis, crafts and Wii Fit sessions and the group is regularly visited by members of Cleveland Fire Brigade, who give talks on fire safety.

The club, which costs £8,000 a year to run, was recently rewarded by the Cleveland Fire Brigade community awards, which see people from across the region honoured for their efforts to make the area a better place.

The Rifty, which is run by the Rift House East Residents’ Association at the town’s Masefield Road Centre, won the neighbourhoods and environment gong and Ian Hayton, Cleveland Fire Brigade’s chief fire officer, presented a glass award.

For more information about the youth club call Coun Akers-Belcher on 07904402864.