Petroc NCS graduates celebrate action-packed summer programme at glitzy ceremony

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The Queen’s Theatre in Barnstaple was a hive of activity on Friday night (September 7), as graduates from Petroc’s National Citizen Service gathered to celebrate another successful summer.

NCS is a once in a lifetime experience that helps young people aged 15-17 build confidence and self-belief. Those who take part have the opportunity to live away from home on an exciting residential, plan and execute a fulfilling social action project and also meet amazing new friends.

This year saw a record number of learners graduating from the college’s NCS programme across North and Mid Devon. The graduates fundraised nearly £10,000 over the eight week summer programme, which has gone to a number of very worthy causes across the county.

Petroc NCS had a variety of creative and unique social action projects this year, working in schools, youth clubs, care homes and parks. The groups supported a number of causes including helping the homeless, mental health awareness and protecting the bees.

Lizzi Stevenson, NCS assistant delivery coordinator, said: “We are immensely proud of all the students who participated in the NCS experience this year - each and every person has grown and developed as a result of taking part and will go on to achieve amazing things.

“We are also incredibly thankful to our team of extremely hard working seasonal staff, school contacts, project organizers, parents and all the businesses and individuals who have supported us this year, without whom, the programme would not be able to go ahead and be the great success that it is,” she added.

Marcus Symons, NCS project manager, echoed Lizzi: I’m so, so proud of everyone that graduated and all the team staff that made all of this possible. I’m full of pride this evening."

The feedback from the learners who took part was also extremely positive.

Jessie Leworthy said: “It was a brilliant experience to make new friends before college and great fun to do in the summer holidays. The social action project is also a great chance to help others.”

Jacob Haynes agreed. He said: “This has given me the opportunity to step out of my comfort zone, meet new people and try new things. I’ve done things I never thought I could, and I feel I’ve become a better person.”

The National Citizen Service (NCS) is currently recruiting for the Autumn Experience 2018, which will take place during the October half term. The NCS Autumn experience is open to all students born between 01/09/2001 and 31/08/2002 that haven’t completed NCS previously. All eligible students can find out more information and take part by registering interest at www.ncsyes.co.uk or call 01271 852429 to find out more.