A GIRLS’ day out proved a lifeline to an under-threat youth group.
South Hylton Youth North East (SHYNE) is struggling to keep its head above water in the face of Government cuts to grants.
The organisation offers a variety of projects and courses, some for fun and some with the aim of helping young people find work.
Eighteen-year-old Francesca Watson, from South Hylton, has been a volunteer with SHYNE for two years.
Francesca, who is studying for her A-levels, said: “I used to come to the youth club when I was younger and I kept coming along and got involved in the volunteering side.
“We are trying to raise money to keep it open. We frequently hold events and parties for the public but we are struggling for money.
“We normally rely on grants, but this year I don’t think we are going to get it so we are going to have to rely on fund-raising.”
The group came up with an idea for a Very Vintage Girls’ Day Out to help raise money for the group.
The event provided arts and crafts, jewellery-making and vintage clothes for sale to ensure that much-needed funds were raised.
Francesca added: “We went around loads of secondhand clothes shops, buying lots of clothes to customise. We’ve been cutting them up and sticking things on and them to sell on. It has been great fun.”
She added: “We have lots of different nights at SHYNE. There are different courses like face-painting, first aid, craft courses and dancing. There’s something for everyone.
As well as fun activities and events the group also has accredited courses to take part in including The Duke of Edinburgh Award.
Francesca said: “I learnt to do face-painting through SHYNE and I’ve since set up my own business.
“SHYNE paid for my face-painting kit to help get me started.
“Nobody ever wants their course to end because they enjoy them so much.”