Preston North End’s National Citizen Service programme reached dizzying heights over the Autumn period with the club recruiting more NCS participants than any other service provider in the country.
The Government initiative, introduced in 2011 is a social development programme for 15-17-year-olds. Here, participants undertake week-long residential visits at activity centres before making their mark in the local community with teenagers planning and delivering a community social action project.
On Preston North End achieving way above their target, NCS Programme Manager Liam Smith said: “We’re proud to say that our Autumn delivery has been recognised as the top performing provider in the country in terms of recruitment numbers, but we’re also delighted that so many young people were able to benefit from such a unique experience that the NCS programme provides.”
The Autumn period saw the PNE Community and Education Trust deliver three separate programmes to young people in Preston with first and second waves seeing students from Preston’s College and Runshaw College attend the programme.
Liam continued: “The success of our delivery in the latter part of 2016 was a credit not only to us as a Community Trust, but also to our partner colleges who helped immensely with our delivery ensuring students got the very best out of their NCS experience.
“Thanks to the hard work and participation of staff, students who have took part in the NCS programme have not only learnt key life skills and acquired new experiences, they are now also able to boost their CV with the NCS programme recognised positively by employers and UCAS.”
Jon Armstrong, EFL Trust Regional NCS Coordinator said: “Preston North End’s delivery of NCS is fantastic and is having a hugely positive impact on young people in Preston. By way of their Autumn programme, 217 young people have given back to their local community making their mark and delivering over 6,500 hours of social action.”
Participants of PNE’s NCS Programme made their mark with a homeless awareness campaign, the planning and delivery of a charity Christmas market and epic charity bike ride challenge. Here, students joined forces to cycle the equivalent distance between their college to Russia on a bike machine in just a matter of days.
Preston North End’s NCS Ambassador and goalkeeper Chris Maxwell commended the achievement and credited the scheme as a brilliant opportunity for all youngsters in the area.
“As PNE’s NCS Ambassador, I’m delighted not only for the club, but for the students involved that so many were able to enjoy what is a fantastic experience for young people in Preston,” said Chris.
“I’ve heard all about the NCS Programme; what a great opportunity it is for young people and one that I would certainly recommend for people to say yes to.”
If you’re aged 15-17-years-old and would like to take Maxwell up on his recommendation and say yes to NCS, the Community and Education Trust have places available for its summer delivery.
To find out more, or to register your interest, contact the Trust on 01772 693309 or email NCS@pne.com.