Young people across Northumberland are being reminded to sign up for the National Citizen Service (NCS) summer 2016 programme before it’s too late.
With dates departing in July or August, the four-week, part-residential programme for teens in Northumberland will include a week's stay in either the Lake District or North Yorkshire, complete with plenty of outdoor activities.
This will be followed by a week staying away from home at Kingswood Dukeshouse Wood in Hexham where the young people will work with local businesses to create their own social action project – improving their employability skills whilst giving back to their communities by volunteering and fund-raising.
The programme is backed by the government so signing up costs just £50, including food, transport and accommodation. Young people eligible for free school meals can take part for £10.
Stephen Drew, NCS recruitment coordinator for Northumberland, said: "Our summer NCS programmes are starting over the coming weeks, so any parents that want to see their teen take part in this once-in-a-lifetime experience should register their interest before it’s too late."
NCS graduate David Mallon, 17, from Blyth, said: "I signed up to NCS because I thought it would look great on my CV and university application, but in reality it has offered me so much more. Through NCS I've met lots of new friends, got to try new activities and improve my confidence. For anyone thinking about taking part, I'd say just go for it."
The National Citizen Service (NCS) programme is delivered in partnership by Northumberland County Council’s Youth Service team and is open to all 16 and 17-year-olds. The initiative brings together young people from different backgrounds and helps them to develop greater confidence, self-awareness and responsibility by working on skills like leadership, teamwork and communication.
Coun Robert Arckless, cabinet member for children’s services at the county council, said: "The NCS programme is a fantastic opportunity for young people across the county to have a lot of fun, learn a variety of new skills, boost their employability and truly engage with their communities. It is really important to help develop and arm our young people with the skills that prepare them for their future and it is through initiatives such as this that we are encouraging a new generation of business and community leaders in Northumberland."
This summer, teenagers in Northumberland can choose from departure dates of July 25, July 29, August 8 or August 12. A limited number of places are available. Parents or teenagers should call 0191 247 4020 or visit ncsnortheast.co.uk to book a place.
National charity Catch22 also delivers the NCS programme in Northumberland and offers dates departing July 21 and August 2. A condensed NCS programme also runs in autumn, for those that can’t take part in the summer.