Safe in Tees Valley News

Local teens give back to Stockton by raising over £460 for community projects

Posted : 12/03/2015

Local teens give back to Stockton by raising over £460 for community projects by bag packing in Asda (Portrack) on Saturday, 7th March as part of national NCS Action Day.

The annual event, now in its second year, aims to showcase young people’s enthusiasm for making a difference to their communities since taking part in NCS – a government-backed youth programme.

Taking place three times a year and outside of term time, NCS is a once–in-a-lifetime opportunity open to 15 to 17 year olds across England and Northern Ireland. It is a unique two or three week full-time programme that helps young people build skills for employment, such as resilience, confidence and leadership, build trust between people of different backgrounds, and create stronger communities where giving back is a way of life. After completing the initial programme, participants become NCS graduates, with access to a wide range of opportunities and support to continue making their mark in their communities.

Katie Harris, 17 from Middlesbrough, said: “It’s great to have a day in the calendar which encourages everyone to come together and have a positive impact on their community. For me, this was an opportunity to reconnect with friends I met on NCS and do something that not only helps the local area, but gives us a chance to continue volunteering in a fun and practical way".

She says: “Setting up and managing my own social action project is something I’d never have done if it wasn't for NCS, but it has given me a range of valuable skills and experiences. I’ve learnt how to interact with people outside of my own age group, lead a team and manage my time under pressure – all of which will be useful to me in the future. I’d definitely encourage other teens to say yes to NCS.”

Nationally, two million hours have already been volunteered by over 130,000 NCS participants to communities across England and Northern Ireland since 2011.

Lorraine Nevison, NCS Graduate Coordinator from Safe in Tees Valley says: “We were so pleased to see so many NCS graduates coming back to help make NCS Action Day a success in the Tees Valley. The volume of voluntary projects taking place on one day really shows that young people today are not disengaged as often portrayed, but compassionate and eager to make a difference. Creating a social action project is just one element of the NCS programme which takes place over two or three weeks and also includes outward bound activities and a week away in their local community learning important life skills.”

Dave Mead, Coordinator from Cleveland Police Cadet Programme says: “The graduates from NCS are setting a fantastic example for the Tees Valley area. By building a generation of community-minded citizens we are, in turn, creating a local society that everyone can be proud of. This project happening in our area is a huge benefit to the people of Stockton on Tees and I hope the day encourages more young people to take part in NCS this year so we can continue the good work.”

Dave Mead, continues: “NCS has proven to pique young people’s interest in their local community, creating a new generation of citizens that care about the environment they live in and have a sense of responsibility towards it. We know that three in five parents noticed their child was more involved in their community as a result of NCS, so NCS Action Day is the perfect opportunity for them to exploit their interest and showcase some of the skills they learnt on the programme.”

NCS’s independent evaluation has shown a significant increase a young person’s interest in their local area since taking part in the programme. Three quarters (74%) of teenagers post-NCS agreed they were more likely to help out locally. Parents too noticed the difference after NCS, with four in five saying their child knew more about tackling problems in their local area and 83% of participants feeling capable of more than they had realised*.

To find out more about the spring, summer and autumn programmes in Tees Valley visit, email or call 01642 664440.


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