Teenagers learn life lessons with service

The awards event for teenagers who took part in the National Citizen Service in Northumberland.
The awards event for teenagers who took part in the National Citizen Service in Northumberland.

Teenagers in Northumberland, who took part in the National Citizen Service, were reunited at a special event to receive their citizenship awards.

The Government-backed scheme, available across the country, is open to 15 to 17-year-olds and includes participation in a string of activities during the holidays.

In Northumberland, one of the scheme organisers is Northumberland County Council’s Youth Service which worked with local youth clubs and projects to give participants an amazing experience.

The programme is designed to encourage young people to step out of their comfort zone and learn new skills while away from home. They are also responsible for planning and running community social-action projects.

Participants spend three nights at an outdoor centre, carrying out physical challenges such as mountain adventure, caving and team challenges.

During the second phase, the youngsters live away from home, where they are given a shopping budget and learn to cook and be independent.

The final part of the programme is spent planning a delivering a project that would benefit the community at large.

Coun Robert Arckless, cabinet member for children’s services at the county council, said: “It is so rewarding to see the confidence of the teenagers grow as they progress through the scheme and make new friends. They learn leadership and communication skills and how to work as a team. The transformation in some of the young people is incredible.”