A night of celebration was held on Friday 14th September at Dreamland, Margate, to mark the successful graduation of more than 730 young people from CXK’s National Citizen Service; a programme aimed at increasing social responsibility, employability and skills.
During the programme the teens – all from the Thanet, Ashford, Canterbury, Dover, Folkestone, Hastings and Wealden areas – designed social action projects that raised donations and awareness for local charities including Folkestone’s Rainbow Centre, Catching Lives, Dads Unlimited. Seaview homeless shelter, and St Martin’s hospital.
Together they gave more than 43,000 hours to social action in their local communities, and raised more than £17,000 for local charities.
The National Citizen Service (NCS) programme is a once in a lifetime opportunity for 16-17 year olds to make a lasting mark in their local communities, whilst learning first-hand the skills that employers are really looking for. Taking place throughout the school summer holidays, NCS began with a week of adventure at an outdoor activity centre where the teens got the chance to take on some adrenaline-fuelled challenges like rock climbing, canoeing, hiking and archery. They went on to live away from home in a uni-style environment for a week, where they had the opportunity to develop life skills like confidence, leadership and communication to boost their CV or UCAS personal statement. Finally, they used all the fun and inspiration from the first two phases to step up and deliver their very own social action project.
At the graduation event, the young people enjoyed a well-earned reward for doing something truly inspirational in their community. They were able to enjoy exclusive access to Dreamland’s park and rides, and were celebrated during a glittering awards ceremony – all receiving a certificate signed by the Prime Minister.
Pauline Smith, CEO at CXK, commented on the success of the programme: “CXK is proud to deliver NCS in Kent, and we have been inspired by the hard work and dedication of this summer’s graduates. The National Citizen Service is the fastest growing youth movement in over a century, with more than 400,000 young people nationwide already having completed the programme, and 5 million hours of voluntary action having been donated through the programme to date.
“NCS is designed to bring young people together from a range of backgrounds, to facilitate the opportunity for them to face challenges, to learn skills for work and life, and to make their mark on their community. NCS is proven to have a massive impact on young people’s lives; UCAS recommends students include NCS in their personal statement, and almost three quarters (72%) of NCS graduates feel more confident about getting a job after doing NCS.”