A leadership club at the Wakeman Boys & Girls Club in Southport has received a merit award and $500 prize for its entry in a national Boys and Girls Clubs of America program.

Wakeman's Torch Club, which aims to impart leadership skills to children ages 11 to 13, won the recognition as a finalist in the national organization's "Kids Only Road Race."

Torch Club's goal is to develop strong character help children grow into conscientious members of the community, officials said.