Tom Brake MP recently visited the National Citizen Service (NCS) programme in Sutton to see how his young constituents are helping to change Britain for the better.
NCS is a scheme which brings together 16 and 17 year olds from different backgrounds to complete a series of personal and team challenges and make a difference in their community.
Following an action-packed stay at an outdoor centre and a week spent learning a new skill in a university-style setting, participating young people team up to run community campaigns for local charities and community organisations. In Sutton, young people are working with organisations including Sutton Housing Association, Homestart and Mencap.
During their visit, Tom Brake MP met a group of young people from Sutton, and helped teams of local teenagers to develop ideas for community campaigns as part of a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style panel. Participants pitched for funding on behalf of causes they felt passionate about supporting. Campaign ideas included raising awareness around domestic abuse, changing negative perceptions of teenagers, getting children more active over summer and hosting a foodshare on a local estate. Across the UK, more than 2000 young people participated in Thursday’s Dragon Den pitches.
The young people said NCS is like nothing they’ve ever done before and it is boosting their confidence and developing their leadership and teamwork skills, while also giving them the chance to make new friends.
Tom Brake said:
“Taking part in the National Citizen Service is a brilliant opportunity for young people from across Sutton and from all backgrounds to come together and address the issues they care about head on. The programme also equips local teenagers with the skills they need to get on in life, whilst meeting new people and experiencing new challenges.
It’s great to see so many local organisations and businesses supporting the valuable work of the NCS and helping young people to make a difference in our community.”
These activities were organised by The Challenge, the UK’s leading charity for building a more integrated society and the largest provider of NCS in England.
500 young people from Sutton will take part in NCS between June and September. To find out more information and to secure a place, visit https://bookings.ncsthechallenge.org