Sign-ups for national youth empowerment programme, National Citizen Service (NCS), are now open in Northamptonshire to any 15-17-year-olds looking to have a life changing summer and boost their CV.
The unique four-week programme is focused around fun and discovery with teens spending time away from home, learning new life skills and also volunteering at least 30 hours of their time to a community project or charity of their choice.
Amy Bakrania from Northampton attended the NCS summer programme. She said: “Before going on NCS I was often prone to sticking to my routine and rarely tried anything new. Like many teenagers, it was easy to fall into the habit of staying indoors watching Netflix and playing on my phone and I don’t think I realised what I was missing out on.
“Signing up to NCS was a little scary initially – I didn’t know many others going and most of the activities were completely new to me, but I’m now so glad I gave it a go. The amount I learnt, the people I met and the opportunities I had to develop during the programme really made me realise the importance of trying new things. I’m now much more adventurous – even if I’m a little nervous about something, I’m willing to give it a try and know it’ll be worth it. It’s definitely an experience every young person should go through – some of the stories I will remember forever!”
Since going on NCS, Amy has gone on to join the regional youth board and give assemblies on her overseas volunteering. She now claims she is much more adventurous and is urging others in Northamptonshire to follow in her footsteps this summer.
The government-backed scheme costs no more than £50, which covers the entire experience from food and accommodation to activities and travel, with bursaries available on a case by case basis.
Phil Everett, from The EBP the regional NCS provider, said: “NCS is a fantastic way to spend the summer after all the hard work of studying for GCSEs. The four-week programme starts with some fun outward-bound style activities followed by a week away at university-style accommodation learning new skills. The last two weeks of NCS involve creating a social action project within the local community to leave a lasting legacy.
“Spending the summer doing something completely out of the ordinary can be quite daunting for some teens but the difference we see in the young people who take part in NCS is really quite amazing. During the programme we see them grow into young adults that not only make lasting friendships, learn new skills and have loads of fun but also become aware of their local community and conscious of the impact they can have on their surroundings.
“NCS also looks great on CVs and UCAS recommends referencing it on personal statements.”
The NCS summer programme will start on 25 June 2018 – with more dates available throughout the summer holidays.
Phil added: “Places are filling up fast in Northamptonshire so I would urge anyone interested in changing their summer from the same old, same old, to something amazing to sign up straight away.”
For further information and to sign up to the summer NCSEM1 programme visit www.ncsem1.org.uk or call 01522 574101.