Useful programme for young people gets funding boost

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An initiative that gives groups of teenagers an opportunity to develop important skills has been extended in Northumberland.

More than £350,000 has been awarded to the county council so it can continue to run the National Citizen Service (NCS) programme.

A recent independent inspection by the NCS Trust commended Northumberland on achieving 100 per cent sign-up success over the last year and praised the multi-agency team for their very good understanding of young people’s individual needs in a group environment.

The NCS brings together teams of 15 young people from different backgrounds and part of it involves tackling outdoor challenges on a residential week away from home.

They will also work with local businesses and social leaders to learn new skills and discover more about their area before developing and delivering community-based volunteering projects that matter to them.

In 2015, 360 or so 16 and 17-year-olds will be able to benefit from taking part in the programme.

Coun Robert Arckless, policy board member for children’s services at Northumberland County Council, said: “The NCS programme gives young people the chance to learn the life skills that help them to build confidence and become young leaders who make a valuable contribution to their communities.”

“As a result of our success in running the programme, I’m very pleased that we have been awarded the funding to extend the contract.”

In Northumberland, it is delivered through the Targeted Adolescent Service. It is available to Year 11 and Year 12 students from all schools and colleges.

For more information, visit www.ncsyes.co.uk or email paul.kirkpatrick@northum berland.gcsx.gov.uk