NCS motivates student to go to University

The National Citizen Service (NCS) programme has impacted numerous young people’s lives in a positive way but none more than Sheffield Wednesday supporter Cara Harrison.

The bubbly teenager has transformed herself from a shy high school student who was unsure what her next steps would be to being accepted by four universities to study Biomedical Science.

Cara puts her new self-found confidence and belief down to her experiences as an NCS student with the Owls and believes NCS played a crucial role in helping her obtain a place at university.

On Friday, Sheffield Wednesday will be hosting their annual NCS match day when Birmingham City visit Hillsborough, live in front of the Sky cameras.

Cara, who still supports the NCS programme at Sheffield Wednesday Community Programme on a voluntary basis, hopes more people will follow her path and say yes to NCS.

“It is good that clubs participate in NCS match day and important that we spread the word.

“Everyone needs to be clear how much of a positive programme NCS is and how it can help young people.

“The NCS has done a lot for me so I want to carry on helping and raising awareness for the programme.

“I had to step out of my comfort zone when I joined the programme, however it was fun and perfect to do in-between finishing school and starting college.

“The NCS is something that everyone should be doing and I have so many lifetime fond memories from my time on the programme. Because of the NCS, I have met some good friends now and I wouldn’t have met them if I didn’t join.

“My confidence instantly boosted and my communication skills improved. I can now talk in front of a crowd of people I don’t know and feel good about it whereas I didn’t before NCS.

“The NCS has taught me independence and responsibility. It will be always something I look back on fondly.”


Cara will this year be an NCS mentor for Sheffield Wednesday before heading off to university in September, with her destination of study yet to be decided.

She continued: “I want to be a genetic health scientist now and the NCS swayed my decision. I knew I wanted to do that degree, but I didn’t realise how many good opportunities were at the end of it.

“I remember writing my University application and it heavily referenced the NCS and my experiences. There was so much to write about the NCS because the opportunities are endless.”

The National Citizen Service (NCS) programme has a proven success rate of helping 15-17 year olds build their confidence levels and develop important life skills. It is a chance for teens to shake things up and develop new skills for whatever post-GCSE life has to throw at them. It changes how teens see the world and has a huge impact on communities across the UK with over 1.9 million hours of social action taking place across the country – the equivalent to building 74 Olympic Stadiums and 1 The Great Wall of China.

To find out how you can get involved in the NCS programme visit –


NCS Matchday takeover!

NCS Matchday has returned with EFL clubs from all three divisions uniting to show their support for the programme which is focused on providing opportunities for 15-17 year olds.

The NCS Matchday takeover has proven to be a huge success in recent years, with the aim to increase awareness and participation.

In the coming weeks, clubs all across the land will host their NCS Matchday. The club’s first team players will have an important role to play by warming up in NCS branded t-shirts and meeting programme graduates.


NCS graduates will be in attendance throughout the day to discuss their experiences of the programme to younger supporters.

NCS is a nationwide experience for 15-17 year olds. It is a unique opportunity for young people to learn new skills alongside having fun and creating unforgettable memories. More than 275,000 young people have already said yes to NCS.

Josh Morris, Scunthorpe United’s NCS Ambassador said: ”NCS is brilliant. It gives young people the chance to experience a variety of challenges while building new friendships and benefitting the local community.”

John’s views were echoed by Cara Harrison, an NCS graduate from Sheffield Wednesday. Talking about the NCS Matchday, she said: ”It is good that clubs participate in NCS match day and important that we spread the word.

”Everyone needs to be clear how much of a positive programme NCS is and how it can help young people. The NCS programme is something everyone should be doing and I have so many lifetime fond memories from my time on the programme. Because of the NCS, I have met some good friends now and I wouldn’t have met them if I didn’t join.”


To find out more about how to get involved in the NCS programme visit –





Teen lands his dream job after completing NCS

After completing an NCS course run by Peterborough United’s community department ‘The Posh Foundation’, teenager Callum Avent landed his dream job at his boyhood club.

There are a number of different challenges for young people as they go through adolescence. One of the most common hurdles is a dip in self-confidence.

The National Citizen Service (NCS) programme has a proven success rate of helping 15-17 year olds build their confidence levels and develop important life skills. It is a chance for teens to shake things up and develop new skills for whatever post-GCSE life has to throw at them. It changes how teens see the world and has a huge impact on communities across the UK with over 1.9 million hours of social action taking place across the country – the equivalent to building 74 Olympic Stadiums and 1 The Great Wall Of China.

Teenager Callum Avent turned his life around after signing up to the NCS programme four years ago at his beloved football club, Peterborough United.

Callum is first to admit that when he started the programme, he was a very shy and quiet person. Now, aged 19, Callum is a self-assured young man and is living his lifelong dream by working full time for his favourite football club Peterborough United as their Futsal Assistant.

”The NCS programme instantly appealed and it has helped me in so many ways.” admitted Callum.

”A lot of people joined who were in the same boat as me and we learned so many important life skills that have proven to be invaluable.

”The NCS programme has benefited me as a whole. I was very shy and had no confidence but by being given responsibilities and working as a team it helped me be who I am today.

“We did a few different tasks such as helping local charities and going away for a few days to Shropshire to do team activities. We also did workshops for CV and employability which opens so many doors.

“Some people at a young age don’t have that much confidence so the NCS programme helps with that and you can conquer so many fears when you are away from your family.”

Callum’s attitude and commitment to the programme was noted by the club’s NCS manager Jenna Lusk, resulting in the die-hard Posh fan gaining full time employment at the League One side.

Callum explained: “Peterborough United invited me to come back and be a volunteer for the NCS programme. It was something I immediately wanted to do, to help others.

“Alongside NCS, I was on the Futsal programme and after my scholarship finished, Jenna offered me a job and I haven’t looked back.

“I would tell any young person to say yes to NCS because it can help you achieve your ambitions that you think may not be possible.

“NCS is growing, when I was first on the course I used to talk to people about it and only a few people would recognise it. Now it is so popular and everyone knows what it is. A lot of organisations recognise NCS.

“I remember five years ago doing work experience as a year 10 student at Peterborough United and now I am here and I love it!”

Peterborough United amongst 31 other clubs across the EFL will be hosting a NCS match day. The NCS Match Day takeover has proven to be a huge success in recent years through the guidance of EFL Trust, with the aim to increase awareness and increase participation. The club’s first team players will have an important role to play by warming up in NCS branded t shirts and meeting programme graduates.

To find out how you can get involved in the NCS programme visit –



Footballers Say Yes to NCS

Professional footballers from the EFL have pledged their support for the National Citizen Service (NCS) by becoming ambassadors for the teenage personal and social development programme.The popular NCS programme is delivered by EFL clubs across the country, helping young people develop important skills whilst making an impact in their local communities. Sheffield Wednesday’s Liam Palmer and former Sky Bet Championship star George Friend have joined a host of footballers who have signed up to support the programme.

The National Citizen Service (NCS) is the country’s flagship youth programme, open to 16 and 17 year-olds across England and Northern Ireland with the aim to create a more cohesive, responsible and engaged society. It is a unique two or three week full-time programme focused around fun and discovery, and includes 30 hours committed to a community project that benefits both young people and society.EFL leading scorer and Scunthorpe United winger Josh Morris met NCS graduates who completed the programme at the Iron’s Glanford Park home. The former England U20 international was quizzed by the Scunthorpe United’s Community Trust’s graduates about his pathway into football, his career so far and his fantastic start to life at Scunthorpe United. The roles were then switched and Josh had his own questions lined up for the graduates, finding out what they have learnt and gained from enrolling as an NCS student.To say “yes” to NCS or to find out more visit

Speaking proudly about his role as Scunthorpe United’s NCS Ambassador, Josh said: “I’m delighted and proud to be chosen as NCS Ambassador. NCS is brilliant. It gives young people the chance to experience a variety of challenges while building new friendships and benefitting the local community. I’m looking forward to getting involved in NCS and meeting the young people on the programme.”

Scunthorpe United’s NCS graduate Ryan Jones said: “NCS has opened up various options that I wasn’t aware of before joining the programme. We have participated in a whole range of different activities and I would encourage any 15-17 year old to consider saying yes to NCS.

“Josh is a brilliant figure to have as Scunthorpe United’s NCS Ambassador. We all asked Josh a few questions about his career and he took a keen interest in how NCS has played a positive part in our lives.”

The EFL’s Trust Programme Manager Dominik Stingas-Paczko added: “The support we get from football clubs and players is fantastic. Our relationship with football clubs allows us to reach a larger audience.

“It’s always great when you see players interacting with young people on the programme. It would be great in years to come to see a professional football player who is an NCS graduate.”

Using the power of football, NCS EFL Trust are in a unique position to publicise the work that NCS are doing during the programme and after. Last year, the social media campaign #NCSMatchDay reached over one million people. The EFL Trust have been delivering the NCS programme since its pilot year in 2011 and now have a network of over 20,000 graduates.

The NCS programme offers a unique opportunity for 16-17 year olds and costs just £50. The programme takes place three times a year in the spring, summer and autumn holidays and 275,000 young people have participated in the programme since it began in 2011. To sign up today or for more information, please visit

2016 NCS player ambassadors:

Barnsley – Marc Roberts
Doncaster Rovers – Niall Mason and Joe Pugh
Rotherham United – Lee Frecklington
Sheffield United – George Long
Sheffield Wednesday – Liam Palmer
Grimsby Town – Shaun Pearson
Scunthorpe United – Josh Morris
Hartlepool United – Padraig Amond
Middlesbrough – George Friend
Accrington Stanley – Nathan Webb
Blackpool – Clark Robertson
Blackburn Rovers – Hope Akpan
Preston North End – Chris Maxwell
Fleetwood Town – David Ball
Burnley – Sam Vokes
Carlisle United – Michael Raynes
Shrewsbury Town – Gary Deegan
Portsmouth – Jack Whatmough

Teens make a difference in Hull and East Riding

It’s not just teenagers that have benefited from NCS in Hull and East Riding this summer!

The group began working with Dove House Hospice, taking on the NCS Accumulator challenge. The challenge itself was to start with £50 and use this to support fundraising and raise awareness. The group exceeded all expectations, raising £1,600 through various fundraising activities ranging from a door to door car washing service, a Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood inspired Great British Bake Off Challenge, and an open mic evening to celebrate local musical talent in Hull.


Dan Clipson of Dove Hospice has been blown away by the support from young people on NCS programmes, and says: This summer was a great experience for both the NCS teams and for us here at Dove House Hospice. The Accumulator Challenge was well received by all of the groups and allowed young people to really develop their skills that they’d learnt earlier in the programme.

We’re excited to see how our growing relationship develops with the NCS programme, allowing the Accumulator Challenge to become a real staple of hospice care awareness and fundraising from a younger generation”.

Many young people have now expressed an interest in continuing their support of the hospice through taking part in upcoming events such as the Colour Run – a 5k fun run leaving you awash with a rainbow of colours.

As well as supporting Dove House Hospice, the group undertook a project to support the HU5 area of Hull. After hearing on Radio Humberside that local people weren’t happy with the state of their streets, the young people took it upon themselves to clean them and filled over 40 bags of rubbish on their first day. Word spread of what they were doing, and Radio Humberside invited them along to speak live on radio with DJ Dave Burns about their social action project.

Whilst benefiting the community, the impact NCS has had on these youngsters has been significant; they have developed life skills, learnt about the local community, and most importantly, developed a sense of achievement with the difference that they have made.

Andreea Voinea, a volunteer aged 16 from Hull said: “This has been the most incredible summer. I had so much fun, tried something new every day and met new people who I can’t wait to meet up with again.’’

Andreea continued: “One of my highlights was creating our social action project to support Dove Hospice and help clean the streets of HU5. It was amazing to be able to see the project through and realise the huge difference we can make if we put our minds to it – the sense of achievement at the end raising over £1,600 for Dove Hospice, and the amount of rubbish we collected was something I’d never experienced before and it really bonded the group. I’d definitely encourage other young people to give it a go.”

Social action projects are taking place across the country with the NCS programme and this is just one of many examples of how young people are making a positive difference in their community.

A Gold Medal for NCS Teens

Young people in Doncaster received an inspirational visit from a gold medal winning Paralympic hero last week.

The group of teenagers who are on the National Citizen Service programme (NCS) in Yorkshire and Humber, were visited by former Team GB Paralympic gold medal winner Liz Johnson.  Thanks to a partnership with Dame Kelly Holme Trust, over 1000 teens on NCS have been inspired and motivated by Paralympian Champions. Club Doncaster Foundation is one of the providers that deliver programme in these areas.


Liz Johnson, was one of many athletes to visit the programme this summer, delivering a workshop to over 120 teenagers from Doncaster. The former Paralympic Swimmer is one of Wales’ most successful Paralympians winning medals in Athens, Beijing and London.

The workshop delivered was fun and engaging, with a purpose to inspire and motivate young people, linking back to the goal setting. The group also took part in interactive team building activities that they found very useful when working on their social action projects. Liz also spoke to the young people about her life story and the journey she went on to becoming a Paralympic medallist.

Liz commented: “Our inspirational programmes are all about supporting young people from all backgrounds to work together, take on new challenges and make a difference. The young people on NCS made fantastic progress in such a short space of time. I can’t wait to hear about how the attitudes and skills they’ve developed impact positively on the success of their social action projects.”

The workshop delivered on behalf of Dame Kelly Holmes Trust have been inspirational to young people.

Jodi Parkinson, who took part in the workshop in Doncaster said: “I really enjoyed the team building activities with Liz and Dam Kelly Holmes Trust, it was amazing to see everyone try and do different things and really push themselves. The workshop has been great and it was very inspirational to meet someone who has achieved so much!”

For more information about the programme please visit

Young People Come First!

Thousands of teenagers from South Yorkshire are set to benefit from a new partnership between First South Yorkshire and the EFL Trust.

This summer, EFL Trust (charitable arm of the EFL) and First South Yorkshire have announced a new partnership that will allow free and discounted travel for over 2,500 young people participating in the National Citizen Service (NCS) programme within South Yorkshire.

NCS is a two-four week part residential programme open to all 16-17 year olds during school holidays. Running across England and Northern Ireland, the programme aims to widen horizons, bridge social divides and create community cohesion whilst developing key skills for work and life. In the third phase of the programme, participants create a social action project in the local community around an issue they are passionate about and spend 30 hours implementing it. In summer 2015, young people of South Yorkshire contributed 100,000 hours of social action by fundraising for local charities, redeveloping outdoor spaces, taking part in inter-generational projects and community work.

The new partnership will benefit young people initially with free travel for two weeks to support them during the social action phase of NCS this summer. This will enable young people to travel around their local community with ease. If a young person has graduated from NCS, and they stay in education, they will be eligible for further discounted travel with First South Yorkshire using a South Yorkshire student pass.

First South Yorkshire, part of FirstGroup plc, are leaders in public transport welcoming almost 60 million customer journeys in South Yorkshire during 2015/16. EFL Trust are pleased to offer this fantastic service to NCS Participants, adding further value to what will be an amazing Summer.

Matt Handley, Regional Project co-coordinator for EFL Trust “This is an exciting partnership with First South Yorkshire that will benefit thousands of young people participating in NCS and will ultimately benefit the local community. This partnership will reward young people for their hard work and dedication as well as being an invaluable tool for them when it comes to planning and delivering a social action project in their local community”.

FL Trust NCS internal

First South Yorkshire’s Allan Riggall, Head of Commercial said, “We are delighted to be working with the EFL Trust in supporting the NCS. Bus travel is an integral part of young people’s lives, and will give them the independence to travel around South Yorkshire safely and at affordable prices with our great value tickets for those in education. We look forward to hopefully extending this partnership beyond this current project and to help the participants of this scheme make a difference in their communities”.

This partnership with First South Yorkshire is set to begin next month. For further information on First South Yorkshire please visit NCS takes place within South Yorkshire, outside of term time, and is open to all 15-16 year olds for no more than £50. In South Yorkshire the programme is run by the EFL Trust, for more information please click here.

NCS Grimsby – The Pride of their Community

Young People from Grimsby Town are celebrating after being nominated for a ‘Pride in the Community Award’ in recognition of their work in the community whilst taking part in the youth empowerment programme, National Citizen Service (NCS).

NCS is delivered by the Football League Trust across the Yorkshire and Humber region – a two-three week programme for 16 & 17 year olds during which participants learn skills for work and life, take on new challenges, meet new friends and contribute to their local community.

The 30 graduates from the NCS programme chose to complete their social action project at St Andrew’s Hospice, providing relief to patients of the hospice suffering from life-limiting illnesses. The children of the Hospice requested for a beach themed garden because they couldn’t get there like their friends can!

The complete facelift of the garden included the painting of a seaside inspired Wendy house, stepping stones, a pirate shaped sand pit and a water play area.

Funds to transform the garden were raised through a cake stall selling home baked items, and a charity car wash that was opposite the Hospice. As well as that materials were kindly donated by Hirebase Ltd.
The nomination came from Lauren Alexander, who co-ordinates the fundraising at St Andrews Hospice.

‘’Their hashtag #bestsummerever, is the only way I can describe my experience with each and every one of the NCS participants. The nurses, children and I have loved having them here. We were sad for the project to be over but also very excited to get out in the garden to experience the new activities NCS have created for us. All of us at the hospice, would like to say a HUGE thank you to the students for running such an incredible project and for allowing us the opportunity of being a beneficiary. They deserve to be recognised for their hard work towards the community!’’

Lee Stephens, from NCS Grimsby Town is delighted at the nomination. Grimsby Town POC 2
“NCS is being recognised more and more for the work that young people are doing in the community and changing people lives for the better. This is a prime example of that. Each and every one of the team has worked tirelessly to make this garden the success it is and the nomination is fantastic, giving young people the recognition that they deserve.”

The awards evening is due to take place in 26th November at Cleethorpes Pier.
We at NCS FLT want to congratulate the work that the young people from Grimsby have put into this project, but also wish them the best of luck on the night.

The Football League Trust has delivered National Citizen Service programmes through their network since the initial pilots in 2011. FLT work with more than 40 organisations across the country to provide this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to 15-17 year olds.
They have a network of over 10,000 graduates who have taken part in this once-in-a-lifetime programme, these young people have developed new skills, made new friends and created memories that will last

To find out more about NCS click here

8,000 Young People deliver 250,000 hours volunteering

Young People on the Football League Trust’s National Citizen Service (NCS) programme have dedicated a Quarter of a MILLION hours making a difference in their local community

To put that into perspective, that would be the equivalent to building 9 Olympic Stadiums!

Throughout this Summer over 8,000 young people aged 15-17 went away with their local football League side to not only have the experience of a life time, but to give back their time to their local community by delivering projects that have supported the different needs and issues within their community.

On completing their first week of action packed adventure on NCS, young people are tasked with planning a social action project of their choice to deliver in their local community. During the Summer there have been some fantastic examples from the 40 organisations that the Football League Trust partner with for NCS.

Rotherham and Doncaster have raised thousands of pounds to buy new toys and equipment for their local children’s hospital, whereas Grimsby Town Community Trust, Sheffield Wednesday, and Youth Options have all redeveloped a sensory garden to benefit the less fortunate.

An NCS group from Luton Town decided to raise money to pay for Luton Town’s men’s disability team to visit Wembley stadium and receive a tour. Alex Beasley, a Luton NCS Participant said “We chose the LTFC men’s disability team because it challenged us as well as trying to make a difference to their lives. I think they had a great day out”

Every project has had a positive impact, leaving a lasting legacy that people in years to come can benefit from. Everyone involved in this Summers NCS deserve huge credit, specifically the young people who have given up their weekend and time to make a difference, changing the stereotypical perception of teenagers.

Loo Brackpool, Business Development Manager at the Football League Trust “NCS gives young people the opportunity to showcase the good work they can do as well as bringing a feel good factor to the community. What we have seen this Summer is fantastic, and the more young people put into NCS, the more they will take away from it for the future. NCS is a once in a life time opportunity for teenagers aged 15-17 and delivers a huge amount of positives”