NCS – Changing lives, one Year 11 at a time

Every year since 2011, young people who have just finished their GCSEs have been taking part in something special, challenging and uplifting.

The National Citizen Service (NCS) is a government-backed program to help build a more cohesive, mobile and engaged society. But, as far as your average Year 11 is concerned, it’s all about having fun and making friends. They will hardly notice that they’re becoming more independent, learning essential life skills and helping to transform communities.

Abseiling, NCS, Year 11, National Citizen Service

NCS is open to young people across England and Northern Ireland after they complete their GCSEs. It is a two to four week programme, taking place in the school holidays, which includes outdoor team-building exercises, a residential and a community-based social action project. What better way to spend that long post-GCSE summer holiday?

NCS is changing lives and helping to tackle some of the country’s biggest social challenges. It is giving young people the tools to change the world around them for the better.

At a time of political uncertainty, where divisions in society are sadly evident, NCS is a great way to bring young people together and help them see more similarities than differences. It does this by putting them through a series of challenges decided to take them out of their comfort zones and strengthen their character. As the programme progresses, the young people gradually take over more responsibility, developing leadership skills essential for the workplace.

Watersports, NCS, Year 11, Teenagers, National Citizen Service

And NCS helps teenagers connect with their communities through social action – meaning it delivers benefits back into society. In fact, for every £1 spent on NCS in 2016, between £1.15 and £2.42 of benefit was delivered back to society.

And, at the end of all that fun and hard work, there’s a celebration evening for teenagers to celebrate all they’ve achieved with their new friends.

Think you can’t afford it? Think your son or daughter wouldn’t cope? Think it would clash with your holiday? Think again!

The whole experience, including food, accommodation and travel costs just £50 (that sounds cheaper than feeding a teenager at home in my experience!) and bursaries are available on a case by case basis. Support is available for young people with additional needs.

If you’re worried about the date clashing with your holidays, go ahead and sign up and NCS will do their very best to find your son or daughter a space at a time that works for you.

This year 100,000 teenagers, or one in six 16 year olds, from different backgrounds will take part in an NCS programme to live together and develop skills together. Through this once in a lifetime experience, they will be becoming not only better individuals, but better citizens.

When my own son brought home a leaflet about it last year, I was very excited about the prospect, but for some unknown reason, he decided not to take part. This surprised me as the great outdoors is his thing and he is the most dedicated Scout/ Explorer you could wish to come across. So when my younger son brings home his own leaflet in a couple of years, I will definitely be encouraging him to take part.

There are still places available for current Year 11s to take part in this once in a lifetime opportunity this summer. To sign up now, go to the NCS website

And if your child is in Year 9 or 10, encourage them to take part in this rite of passage when their time comes!

Follow NCS on social media:

  • Facebook @NCS
  • Twitter @NCS
  • Instagram @NCSyes
NCS, National Citizen Service, Year 11, Teenagers

11th September 2016
NCS Celebration @ Athena, Leicester, UK
© Tom Horton

This is a sponsored post.

Author: Sarah Mummy

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  1. I am so excited that Morgan will be a part of NCS this summer. I must admit I had never heard of the programme, until he came home from school one day clutching a letter (you know it’s important when the letter doesn’t fester in the school bag for months). He finishes school on the Friday, has prom on the Friday night, and then NCS on the Monday. What a great way to celebrate the end of the exams x

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    • What great timing for him to do it straight after his exams and prom! Definitely something to look forward to. Will be interested to hear how he gets on, I’m sure he’ll have the best time!

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  2. Wow I didn’t even know this existed but what a brilliant thing to do after GCSEs and such a good way to start learning about team building.

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    • I think it’s amazing thing! Especially as it’s so cheap. I have no idea why my son decided not to do it last year. I’m looking forward to finding out how Tracey’S son gets on with it.

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  3. I really like the sound of this scheme and it’s something I’ll be looking at for H when his time comes.

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    • It sounds fantastic, doesn’t it? I don’t know why any teenagers wouldn’t want to take part! I would have jumped at the chance at their age.

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  4. This is a brilliant scheme, I know a few teens who have done it and it was really rewarding and a great way to break up the lengthy summer holiday too

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    • I don’t actually know anyone who has done it, but I will certainly be encouraging my younger kids to take part. That holiday is so long, they do need something to break it up.

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  5. I think this is such a great idea, I am glad to hear that my son’s school makes them aware of it too.

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