You'll have a short time away from home and take on outdoor activities, before making your mark in your local community as you bring a team project to life.
The Football League Trust runs NCS programmes for thousands of 16-17 year olds with its football clubs and organisations across the country. You can see what some of the guys got up to last year by checking out our Facebook page.
With NCS you'll live with your team at an NCS site for two weeks (with a couple of days at home in between). While you're there you'll take part in a range of activities, learn loads about yourself and make new friends. At the end, you and your team head home to help out in your local community.
A huge part of your NCS experience is developing and growing your skills, but the coolest part is that you'll have the opportunity to put them into practice when you take on projects in your community.
At the end of it all, get dressed up for the NCS graduation ceremony, where you'll be recognised for your achievements and even get a certificate signed by the Prime Minister. It doesn't stop there though. As a graduate you'll have access to loads of other opportunities and the chance to venture overseas with the International Citizen Service.
Click here to find out more
The Football League Trust has been a part of NCS since its beginning in 2011, and will deliver over 7,000 places in 2014 across the football club community schemes and organisations. To see which football clubs and organisations are delivering NCS with us please click here
NCS programmes run during spring/summer/autumn holidays, so it won't interfere with your studies if you are at school or college. This varies between clubs, and they offer different start dates, you can find out more when you register your interest.
A maximum contribution of £50 is required for the whole NCS programme. This goes towards the cost of equipment, activities, accommodation, meals and expenses. We are however committed to ensuring that the cost of the programme does not become a barrier to young people taking part. If you are concerned about the cost of the programme please speak to your local NCS provider who may be able to arrange a reduced level of contribution for you.
Danielle Sweeting, Leyton Orient FC - 2012 NCS Graduate
"I found NCS great. I was able to do a number of things that I would have never tried or been able to do if I didn't go to NCS. It has been an amazing experience for me and I have met some great people along the way.
For the first residential we went away camping. We got to do activities such as; team building, orienteering and rock climbing. I found that most of the activities pushed me to the extreme, especially the rock climbing.
We went to a home residential for the second week. There were so many activities that we got to participate in, such as; an army day, rock climbing, archery, and team building. I had to face my fears, especially of heights because nearly everything consisted of being up high.
My social action project was based with an elderly group of people who live semi-independently at Doreen Capstan House. I was the project manager of my group and at times I found this hard, but when we finally delivered the project, all the hard work put in was worth it.
The first day we took Doreen Capstan House bowling, the second day we went to Doreen Capstan House and had a 'buddy day' with them, and on the third day we ran an Olympic themed sports day. I found that the elderly residents thoroughly enjoyed their time with us. There was one resident in particular that we helped, Joseph. We completely transformed his house from somewhere which is inhabitable to a palace.
I have gained a lot of skills from NCS, such as; communication, socialising and leadership skills, all of which will help me progress in life. NCS has given me a lot of opportunities to continue working in the community. I have been able to sign up for courses and also volunteer at sport sessions and activities."
"The teams are a credit to both the club and NCS and were an inspiration to me and the future economy of the country."
(Barclays, Head of Senior Banking)
"Reforming Richmond Park would have taken our group 6 months to complete but these inspirational young people did it in a couple of weeks, thank you!"
Barbara Morris (Friends of Richmond Park)
"Looking back two years I wouldn't have thought I would be where I am now, having people look up to me, and respect me, knowing that I have chosen the right path is amazing. Mentoring and supporting other young people has been a real learning curve for me."
"It gave everyone a sense of achievement that we had done something to help the community and hopefully convince them that they are wrong to judge people our age so quickly. It has taken the boredom out of a very long summer holiday along with helping me overcome confidence issues and encouraging me to make friends with people I will be at college with."
Bethany Hullett (Grimsby Town FC)
"It allowed me to overcome my fears of heights, develop my social skills and make new friends. My participation on NCS has also leaded to me gaining an apprenticeship in the club's community scheme."
Daniela Burge (Stevenage FC)
"The sights from the top of the mountain were breath-taking... all of that effort to get to the top was definitely worth it for that sense of satisfaction."
Chloe Preece (Brighton & HA FC)
Check out last year's Graduation Brochure [PDF DOWNLOAD]
NCS is open to all 16 and 17 years olds. NCS takes place over several weeks (out of school/college time) in spring, summer or autumn. The programme that you take part in will depend on your age and current school/college year:
• Spring programme - Young people will need to be year 12 age equivalent
• Summer programme - Young people will need to be year 11 or year 12 age equivalent
• Autumn programme - Young people will need to be year 12 age equivalent
Please note the participant doesn't have to be in education to do NCS
NCS is a government initiative which was piloted in selected areas across England during 2011 and 2012. So far over 40,000 young people have taken part in NCS across the country, and The Football League Trust has been involved from the very beginning. In 2013 there will be even more young people taking part in NCS with 5,700 places being delivered by the Football League Trust. In future years it is the government's intention to make NCS available to all young people. As NCS grows we are seeing an increased number of important stakeholders recognising the value of NCS, with employers and universities coming on board to voice their support for the programme.
NCS is not a football programme and therefore it is not essential for participants to be a football fanatic. However there will be opportunities for young people to visit their local stadiums and meet their Player Ambassador. In some areas there may be a number of other providers (supported by The Football League Trust) delivering NCS whose area of work does not relate to football therefore it would be worthwhile looking into this before participants choose which provider they would like to do NCS with.
A maximum contribution of£50 is required for the whole NCS programme, please contact your local NCS provider for confirmation. This goes towards the cost of equipment, activities, accommodation, meals and expenses. We are however committed to ensuring that the cost of the programme does not become a barrier to young people taking part. If you are concerned about the cost of the programme please speak to your local NCS provider who may be able to arrange a reduced level of contribution for you.
Places for each of the spring, summer and autumn programmes are limited, and allocated on a 'First Come, First Served' basis. To be assured of a place, you will need to complete the application form and send it to your NCS provider with the payment. They will then confirm the young person's place and send you all the necessary details. So sign up quick to get a place!
Spending money is not essential as everything is provided for participants. However there may be opportunities for participants to use a payphone, buy souvenirs and spend money in the tuck shop so participants may wish to bring a small amount of money with them on their residential, we would recommend a maximum of £10.
We are committed to making the NCS programme inclusive for all young people. If participants have additional needs we will make every effort, where possible, to ensure additional support is put into place which will allow young people to benefit and take part in the programme. As a parent/guardian we would encourage you to discuss any additional needs with your local delivery provider so that they can plan appropriately. Examples of additional needs might include learning difficulties, disabilities, emotional/behavioural needs, medical needs and young carers.
As part of the sign up process for the programme we will ask you to provide information of any specific medical/health needs. We will use this information to ensure careful planning of the programme and all staff working directly with participants will have access and knowledge of any medical/health information. If you are a parent/guardian and have any concerns regarding health/medical needs please discuss this directly with your local NCS provider.
We are committed to catering for all religious/cultural beliefs and would be willing to discuss how we could be flexible to accommodate such beliefs. To discuss such options please contact your local NCS provider.
We understand that for some young people taking part in NCS can be daunting and participants may feel more comfortable to join an NCS group with one of their friends. In these circumstances we will make every effort to take this into account when organising groups. However, an important part of the NCS programme is to encourage young people to mix with people from different backgrounds and who they haven't met before. NCS is a fantastic opportunity for young people to make new friends and have a great time together.
A social action project is when a group work together to try and fix an area of concern for their community. NCS is an opportunity for young people to shape their communities by designing and delivering meaningful social action projects that will benefit others and make a difference to those living in their area. Examples of social action projects include renovating a community venue, cooking a lunch for elderly residents and raising money for a local charity.
Young people are encouraged not to sign up for NCS if they are not committed to being involved in the whole programme, or if they do not intend to participate fully in all aspects of NCS. Participation is an important aspect of NCS and young people will be expected to take on new challenges and try new things. Young people must be prepared to attend for the whole programme and all absences must be agreed in advance with your local delivery provider.
For the summer programme participants will need to be available for three consecutive weeks of full time activity followed by 30 hours of social action delivery (usually delivered within one or two weeks). If you have a holiday booked please speak to your local delivery provider as dates will vary between providers and it may still be possible for you to take part in the programme. If you are unable to take part in the summer programme you may be able to sign up for the autumn or spring programmes.
NCS has been designed to start once exams have finished. There may be a few occasions when we will invite participants to attend important events leading up to the programme, such as NCS induction days, however we will make every effort to arrange these in the evenings or at weekends so that it doesn't interfere with the participant's studies or other important dates such as exams and prom nights.
Yes, a key element of NCS is seeing young people take part in residentials. There might be slight variations to the structure of the residentials, however this will depend upon which programme participants take part in. Typically, there is an outward bound week which sees young people try new activities and take on various challenges. On completion of this young people take part in another residential, a lot closer to home in which they learn new skills and learn about their local community. The residentials are a fantastic way for young people to develop increased levels of independence and responsibility.
During the residentials all meals will be provided and there may also be opportunities for young people to learn new skills by cooking their own meals with the support of staff. During the sign up process you will be asked to provide details of any specific dietary requirements, so that this can be passed onto the residential venues. If you are concerned about dietary requirements then please speak directly to your local NCS provider.
Transport will be provided to all of our residentials. We will however require participants to make their own way to the central meeting location before we set off. During the social action projects, participants will be expected to find their own way to various meeting points and venues, in order to complete the activities.
This will depend on the layout of the accommodation venue. However, in most cases the accommodation used will require participants to sleep in shared bedrooms. Male and female accommodation will always be kept separate and there will be strict rules about access to bedrooms. Young people are encouraged to speak to staff if sleeping arrangements are of a concern to them.
These are allowed, however young people should be aware that use of these items will be kept to a minimum. For example young people will be encouraged to use their phones only during breaks or in their free time. During activities young people may be asked to leave their phones at base or they may be collected in by a staff member to prevent loss or damage, and also to ensure we have young people's full attention. The use of mobile phones in bedrooms will be discouraged and participants will be expected to respect each other's privacy and avoid inappropriate use of mobile phones or recording equipment. We understand that young people will want to contact home during the residentials, however, as NCS is about gaining independence staff will encourage this to be kept to a minimum. Parents/guardians will be provided with emergency contact details closer to the time and so will always be able to get in touch with someone during the residentials if necessary.
There are many ways that you can help to support NCS, here are just a few:
• Speak to us about your son or daughter and let us know about any concerns you might have with regards to them taking part in NCS
• Once your son or daughter has signed up, help support us in ensuring that they actually start the programme and don't back out at the last minute
• NCS is designed to be challenging and there will be times when young people might feel like giving up. In these circumstances please help us to keep your son or daughter motivated by giving them praise and encouragement.
We take the safety of participants very seriously on NCS. All outdoor activities will be carried out under the supervision of qualified and experienced instructors and risk assessments will be carried out at all accommodation venues. Throughout the programme participants will be placed into groups of 15 and each group will be supported by 3 members of staff. Each member of staff will receive thorough training and will have had to undergo an Enhanced Criminal Records Check to ensure they are safe to work with children and young people.
In addition to this we ask that all participants follow a simple code of conduct throughout their time on NCS to ensure the safety of themselves and others. If a young person seriously or persistently breaks the code of conduct or causes harm to themselves or others then we may ask them to leave the programme. In these circumstances we will always contact parents/carers.
You don't need to worry about buying things specifically for the residentials, as we will provide all the required specialist equipment. However, if the participant does not have access to some of the items listed below please contact your local NCS provider, who may be able to help. If the participant owns specialist equipment such as waterproofs and walking boots then they may bring these, however it must be approved by a qualified instructor.
Extra t-shirts or a thermal top
Warm tops (ideally fleece) and/or waterproof top
Thick and thin walking socks (for walking)
Trousers for walking (not jeans)
2 pair of trainers (one that can get wet)
Hat or cap
A packed lunch for eating during the journey on the first day
Toiletries: soap, toothbrush and toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant etc
Prescribed medication if needed
Notepad and pen
Books or magazines
Bin bags (for wet clothes)
1 large back (e.g. suitcase, wheeled case, etc.)
1 day bag (e.g. small ruck-sack)
WHAT NOT TO BRING
We are not able to insure personal belongings such as watches, jewellery, iPods, mobile phones etc. It is advised to leave them at home. If the participant chooses to bring such items, it is at their own risk.
Mobile phones are allowed, however, during activities participants may be asked to leave their phone at base or it may be collected in by a staff member to prevent loss or damage and so that we have their full attention during activities.
The Trust has been involved with NCS since the very beginning in 2011, and is now proud to be delivering 5,700 places during 2013.
The Trust is a registered charity that governs, advises and audits the 72 charitable trusts associated with the professional clubs of The Football League. There are 2,500 members of staff across the 72 member trusts who deliver a wide range of projects under The Trust's main themes of sport, education, inclusion and health.
Using 'The Power of Football' to engage with all sections of society, The Trust truly inspires people to achieve their goals. Whether the Government agenda is reducing childhood obesity, sustainable employment, apprenticeships, formal education or reducing gun and knife crime, The Trust's network has a voice in 72 diverse communities that people listen to.
Engaging with well over one million people annually, some of the other key Football League Trust initiatives include:
Education & Futsal Scholarship programme, offering 16-18 year olds a chance to find passes on and off the pitch by gaining a BTEC Diploma in Sport and an NVQ in Coaching, whilst training regularly at a Football League club. When Wednesday comes, the students travel from all corners of the country to compete in The Football League Trust Futsal League. For more information visit tvseducation.com
Tackling it Together, a number of initiatives delivered in partnership with npower covering respect, education and career choices reaching over 100,000 young people each year.
Every Player Counts, the largest disability sports programme in the country engaging with over 40,000 people of all abilities and ages.