Young people from Watford and Three Rivers show support for care leavers at Christmas as part of National Citizen Service (NCS)

29 November 2016

Young people from Watford and Three Rivers showed their support for young care leavers who may be spending Christmas alone as part of the National Citizen Service (NCS) with Hertfordshire County Council Youth Connexions.

34 young people who took part in the autumn programme split into three teams for their social action projects – making up care packages to give to care leavers who may be facing this Christmas alone; entertaining local elderly people or raising money together for charity.

The NCS programme began with a weekend residential stay at Kingswood Activity Centre in Kent where young people took part in activities including climbing, archery and laser tag.

On their return to Hertfordshire, the groups, based at YouthPoint in Watford and Rickmansworth Youth Centre, learnt key skills including team working, CV writing, leadership and time management as well as first aid and a visit to the Watford fire station.

Using their newly acquired skills, the young people worked together to plan and implement projects to benefit their local communities.

As well as the Christmas boxes for care leavers, other young people taking part decided to organise activities including a quiz, dancing and tea and cakes for elderly residents at Crosfield Court in Watford.

Meanwhile, the Three Rivers team raised money for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust and The Pepper Foundation, which provides support and hospice care for terminally ill young children. The young people have raised over £300 so far from a sponsored walk, busking and a cake sale, with the money expected to hit almost £500.

Rish, who took part in the programme said: “My confidence has really improved”.

Keith said: “It’s good to escape from your comfort zone. I enjoyed making the elderly laugh and smile”.

The next NCS programme with Youth Connexions will take place in summer 2017. For more information please visit https://www.youthconnexions-hertfordshire.org/youth-work/national-citizen-service/