18 Year Old Katie Helps Support 70 Vulnerable Households

“Everyone should come together in times of need and work together as a team.” says Katie McDougall who has been volunteering with Preston North End ‘Helping Hampers’ Campaign, she continues, “As a young person, I’ve got lots of time on my hands and if I can volunteer my services, I will. If I can help others, put a smile on their face and get them through this hardship, then obviously it makes me feel good as well!”   

Katie, aged 18, joined Preston North End Community and Education Trust (PNECET) to volunteer for their ‘Helping Hampers’ Campaign. The campaign supports the most vulnerable people in the community of Preston with hampers of essential food and provisions.  So far she has helped provide 70 vulnerable household with essential provision to help get them through this difficult period.

Katie first came in to contact PNECET when she did NCS in 2019 and that is how she found out about the opportunity to volunteer for the ‘Helping Hampers’ campaign. NCS is a youth programme designed for 16-17 year olds that runs every summer and autumn. The experience is all about empowering young people, to help develop their skills that will set them up for life after school. On NCS, participants live away from home and get a taste of independence as well as positively impacting their local community through a social action project.

Katie said: I heard about this [PNECET Helping Hampers] because I’ve taken part in NCS. My family are quite involved with Preston [North End], follow them on Facebook, and saw that the Community and Education Trust are doing this really good scheme making hampers for vulnerable people.”

Katie is a student at Newman College and should have been doing her exams. Instead, she’s at home still studying but with plenty of time on her hands and so volunteered a few hours each week to help put together over 70 hampers together for vulnerable people within Preston.

Christine Latus is Preston North End season ticket holder and was a recipient of a PNECET Helping Hamper, she said;

“It’s absolutely wonderful, it’s a real surprise – I didn’t expect anything like this at all, but it’s really helpful and it’s lovely to think that the club are thinking about the supporters in these strange times. We obviously can’t go to matches or anything, so it’s really, really kind, I really appreciate it.”

NCS have recently launched ‘Keep Doing Good’ to help young people take an active role in the recovery of the country after COVID-19.

As part of Katie’s time on NCS she delivered a social action project that had a positive impact on the community. After her volunteering with PNECET Katie is keen to do more volunteering to support the community.

Katie said “It’s been great to help out and support the local community of Preston. I want to continue doing that and look forward to volunteering more in the community. I would encourage other young people my age to take up volunteering, it’s really rewarding and a good use of time”

Preston North End Community and Education Trust Community Partnerships Manager Rebecca Robertson said: “Katie has been a valued volunteer on our PNECET Helping Hampers campaign. She has spent time in our offices at Deepdale helping with making the boxes for our hampers and packing them with food, toiletries and other engaging materials for the vulnerable members of our community.

“It has been great to see one of our NCS graduates getting involved with our community initiatives during this difficult time and we’re looking forward to working with Katie more on the NCS Keep Doing Good project, as we’re sure she can continue making a real impact in our community!”

If you are 15-17 and want to support your local community volunteering then sign up to ‘Keep Doing Good’ and help get your local community back on its feet after. 

Schools & Colleges Awarded at NCS Champion Schools Event

60 schools and colleges from South Yorkshire and Humber have been recognised for their outstanding contribution to the National Citizen Service (NCS).

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Last weekend on the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, 7 young people from Yorkshire and Humberside represented their generation and helped the country remember at the National Remembrance Service in London.

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Thousands of young people from across South Yorkshire have benefited from free bus travel when taking part in the National Citizen Service (NCS) programme thanks to First South Yorkshire.

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Teens on NCS revamp garden at local hospital

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Sheffield Teens make difference on NCS

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Teens from Hull look to break the stigma

In Hull, 15 teenagers that have recently taken part in the National Citizen Service (NCS) programme with Tigers Trust have raised enough money to support 72 people that suffer with mental health.

As part of NCS, a flagship youth programme aimed at 15-17 year olds, participants deliver a social action project that will have a positive impact on their local community.

Due to personal reasons and recognising a national issue, the group of teens from Hull chose to support Mind, a national mental health charity that was recently announced as EFL’s (English Football League) new charity partner.

In the space of a week, the group wanted to raise funds and awareness of mental health. Their week started off with a bucket collection at local shopping centre St Stephens which was also an opportunity to raise awareness of Mind. The group then did a sponsored walk over the Humber Bridge which was chosen as a result of the high suicide rate on the bridge.

In total, the group raised an amazing £720 which will support 72 people in Hull with group support. As a momentum of their week, the group presented Mind with a mural which now sits in the headquarters of the charities offices.

Jasmine Russell, who was a member of the group from Hull, commented on their choice of charity: “We chose Mind due to mental health being very close to many people’s hearts within our group.

“Many of us either suffer from a mental health issue or know someone who does. The aim of our project was to raise awareness and reduce the stigma surrounding mental health as well as raising money through the sponsored walk across the Humber Bridge and the bucket collection in St Stephens.”

Keegan Hoyle, another member of the group, was delighted to be able to support Mind: “I think Mind is a great charity as they offer a wide range of help and advice for people that suffer from mental health which is becoming such a prominent issue in today’s society.”

The group’s hard work was recognised by David Smith, Chief Executive of Mind Hull and East Yorkshire, who wrote a letter of thanks to the youngsters, commending their work in the space of a week.

Thousands of teenagers from Yorkshire and Humber will be taking part in NCS this summer through EFL Trust and will be having a positive impact on their local community.

For further information about NCS visit www.ncsyes.co.uk.

NCS Teens Godsends for homeless charity

30 teenagers from Hull that have taken part in the National Citizen Service (NCS) with Tigers Trust have been labelled ‘godsends’ by a local homeless charity, Hull Homeless Community Project (HHCP).

Stevenage FC become latest club to sign up to USW Football Foundation Degree

Stevenage FC Foundation have teamed up with the University of South Wales and EFL Trust to launch a brand-new foundation degree for aspiring coaches to study a higher education course whilst gaining practical experience out in the local community.

The Foundation’s two-year Foundation Degree programme is a course designed for individuals wanting to attain a university qualification and are passionate about pursuing a career in the football industry.

Students develop the necessary skills, qualities and characteristics that are required to work within professional football club community departments or national governing bodies.

Delivered in partnership with the University of South Wales, Stevenage FC Foundation become one of over 35 clubs across the country to deliver the course including Shrewsbury Town, Newport County and Sheffield Wednesday.

All lectures, seminars and tutorials are delivered in a supportive and inspirational club environment, based predominantly within your own football club via online material. This is supported with residential stays at the University of South Wales campus in Cardiff where students from all the clubs, come together twice a year.

Alongside the academic element of the course, students will complete up to 200 hours of voluntary coaching within the community, alongside the Foundation staff, allowing the students to embed and develop the coaching techniques learnt within lectures.

Through the Foundation’s partnership with the University of South Wales, all students will be enrolled as a student at the university. Students will be able to access the university’s online library, blackboard and learning materials, providing them with the best possible learning platform to excel within.

Head of Foundation, Joe Goude said, “We are incredibly excited about the being able to bring the USW Foundation Degree to Stevenage. This is something we’ve been working on for nearly a year now and we cannot wait to get started.

“We already have a fantastic apprenticeship pathway in place for further education with Sporting Futures Training and this is the next tier of that pathway that will allow those apprentices to progress to a higher education programme whilst continuing to build on their practical experience out in our community.

“This programme has seen great success elsewhere in the country with some amazing examples of what students have gone on to achieve and the Foundation is looking to replicate that success locally, to create a viable pathway for people to gain new knowledge, but it into practice in the local community and ultimately make themselves more employable.”

Prerequisites to Apply:

  • BTEC Level 3 – MPP. A Level – DD
  • Enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check
  • Three A*-C grades at GCSE, including English and maths

More details of the course can be found here.