Our amazing NCS Experience 2018 by Siobhan & AbiPublic Speaking by Molly DrewGroup Work in Gorgeous Grasmere. By Rosie TurnerFRIENDSHIPS, FUN AND FALLING . By Katie WilliamsSea Dip Surprise- By Caitlyn SeymourMy New Adopted NCS Family. By James Tomlinson-WrennMy unforgettable NCS experience – by Eve EdwardsI said yes….best decision ever? By Ellie PegdenZetland FM Live NCS InterviewsZetland FM Live NCS interviews

Our amazing NCS Experience 2018 by Siobhan & Abi

NCS is an amazing experience for any school leaver after a very stressful few months of exams at school. Not only did my confidence levels increase massively but also, I made a great group of new friends who I believe I will be friends with for a very long time. The summer programme consisted of four very different weeks. Week one and two were residential, in which we had to be independent and had to challenge ourselves, this has led to us feeling more willing and confident to try new stuff. The programme helped us to face our worst fears and allowed us to conquer them. The third week was preparation for our social action project, which our group decided to support our local charity the Grenfell club, this allowed us to give back to a charity which helps so many different people in our area who have learning difficulties. We planned an amazing fancy dress sponsored walk, a race night and a charity football match with stalls where we all together raised over £2100. The programme was excellent and we both made unforgettable memories.

After attending the summer programme all graduates had the opportunity to apply to be on the Regional Youth Board and attend Kickstart. Both mine and Abi’s applications were successful, we travelled to Milton Keynes where we met our Regional Youth Board team NE1. Here we took part in passion point sessions, meetings and team building activities. We then began planning our Regional Youth Board meetings for 2018/2019 and began to consider options for what we could do for social action day. The NCS summer programme alone was an incredible experience but to be offered to do something after NCS was an extra bonus and we both hope to do more with NCS over the next few years.

Public Speaking by Molly Drew

Taking part in NCS this summer has been completely life changing. During the program, I was able to take part in outdoor activities and personal skills workshops which both taught me a lot about myself and my team mates; but the opportunities didn’t stop there! Once I had finished NCS, I was approached by the director of Imagine You Can UK who asked me to host our graduation evening alongside a fellow graduate, Harry Twohig, from the program in 2017 who had been a volunteer this summer. If it hadn’t been for the skills I had learnt during NCS, I may have been inclined to deny the opportunity. However, I now had the confidence and the belief in myself to do it.

The day of the graduation evening was nerve racking. But when I arrived at Macmillan Academy where it was to be held and I met with the Imagine You Can Team and all of my friends from NCS, my fears melted away. The greatest thing about NCS is that you not only develop as a person, but also develop as a team; so I knew that after everything I had overcome with my wave during the 4 week program, this was another stepping stone I could overcome with them by my side.

The evening was a complete success! Watching videos and looking at photos that had been taken during the program was amazing, seeing what just a small number of the young people in Redcar and Cleveland had achieved and the difference that we had all made to people’s lives.

A few weeks later, Dave, the director of Imagine You Can UK, rang me and asked if I would be interested in hosting the North East Star School Awards alongside Harry. The thought of hosting an evening in front of a group of complete strangers was a really scary thought, but I had already proved to myself that I could do it at our graduation, so I was more excited than anything else.

Of course, this was another fantastic night which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. This evening gave me the opportunity to network with people in all walks of life and to meet and share experiences with other graduates from the North East. Everyone was so proud and supportive of Harry and I which made the night even better!

Ncs has taught me that it is extremely important to grasp every opportunity that comes your way and make the most of it, as many of these opportunities lead to others. I have thoroughly loved my NCS experience and I can’t wait to see what other opportunities come my way.

Thank you so much to Harry, Dave and all of the IYC team!

Group Work in Gorgeous Grasmere. By Rosie Turner

As the days are coming to an end at Grasmere, we’ve done so many amazing activities that have made my NCS experience worthwhile. I feel like I have become a lot more confident and feel better just being myself around other people. The leaders have helped me to discover my true self and have coaxed me out of my shell to try new things and just basically be myself.

The activity where we went gorge walking was absolutely fantastic; it started the week off in such a good way and made me excited for the rest of the weeks activities. Our team learnt to work together by looking after each other and passing back information. There were lots of deep bits and raised rocks which made the activity harder but more fun. There were natural slides and deep pools where you could swim: sliding down the biggest drop was an amazing experience which made me want to do it again… so I did! The instructors were helpful and told us how to get down the drops even though they had told us multiple times already.

I’ve made so many new friends and have talked to people who I normally wouldn’t think too have a conversation with. The experience I have had has been one that I will remember for a long time. It is definitely worth doing.

FRIENDSHIPS, FUN AND FALLING . By Katie Williams

My name is Katie Elizabeth Williams and I am a 16-year-old from Wave 2 at NCS. Despite being a young person, I’ve made a lot of life-changing decisions in my life so far. But saying YES to NCS is by far the best.

The National Citizen Service is a four-week long experience which allows you to face new challenges, make new friends, learn new things and give back to the community.

As an introvert, the idea of taking part in NCS and meeting new people seemed quite daunting, yet as the end of my experience draws nearer, I realise that the initial feeling of anxiety Is worth it as not only have I gained new skills, but I’ve also gained lifelong friends.

Here’s how my experience went…

Week 1 is a residential week, where you meet your team leaders and other young people who are part of your wave. You also face many physical and exciting challenges which help you to gain skills such as confidence, team work and resilience.

At the beginning, our team building games and exercises were a little bit awkward as we were all very hesitant towards each other, but even after only an hour of this, we felt more confident and comfortable and even made friends who we felt we’d known for years! Our team leaders helped us to feel important and respected, refraining from treating us like children which allowed us to get along easier. They’re all such amazing people and although it can make you feel anxious when you first meet, it’s worth it when you get to see the crazy, lovable side of them.

We stayed in Grasmere, a beautiful, quiet place in the Lake District and as there was between 4-8 people in a room, it meant that I had to share with new people. Naturally, this seemed a little nerve-wracking, but after my friend and I instantly clicked with 4 other people of whom we shared a room with, I felt a lot happier and more comfortable. Now, we’re all best friends, all with something unique about us, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Whether we’re singing and dancing to ABBA, busting out the Cha Cha Slide, or eating chocolate at 1am, I know I’ve found friends to last a lifetime.

The first activity my group took part in was gorge walking, a river journey which requires a lot of support, team work and bravery, making it a great activity to connect with and learn to put our trust in others. This activity was my favourite as it challenged my anxious feelings and gave me a sense of thrill and adventure. We slid down water falls, kept each other safe and came back from it with huge smiles on our faces, feeling like more of a team with every second.

The second activity my group experienced, was Kayaking, another thing that I’d never done before. The thought of being in a kayak alone did make me nervous and for myself, kayaking proved a great challenge (understatement), requiring strength, determination and persistence. However, with a lot of support from my team and my determination to keep going, I completed our trip around the lake and felt incredibly proud of both myself and my team mates, who had by this point, become my friends.

Our final activity was a mountain adventure in which we got to choose whether or not we wanted to take part in the easier or the more challenging walk. I picked the challenging one.
I think the difficulty of the challenging hike, was underestimated. The steep hills and slippery rocks meant that the walk was slightly painful, incredibly tiring and meant we had to look out for each other. This was by far the most challenging activity I did, with a lot of motivation, determination, and support needed, especially as I spent more time falling than I did walking.
Don’t let this put you off though, because although during this walk, I questioned why I had chosen the harder option, it was all worth it in the end when we arrived back to Grasmere tired, wet and incredibly proud of ourselves and others.

Week 2 was certainly a more relaxed week, where we stayed closer to home with two people to a room. During this week we learned about body confidence, politics, had visits from local companies, and even had a debating session which got incredibly interesting to say the least.

I feel like the body confidence session, in which we looked at how modern society pictures the perfect body and how social media and magazines affect our views of ourselves and others, was a very important thing to do and should definitely be looked at more often. We watched a video on how models are photo shopped to fit the public’s view of perfection even though perfection is unrealistic, and I came back from the session feeling a lot more positive about myself as it taught us that there really is no right or wrong in how people should look as everyone is different.

Our visits from local companies taught us a lot about the working world and the responsibilities that come with it. Over these couple of days where we investigated the world of work, our NCS team leaders taught us how best to get a job, write a CV and impress your interviewer when competing for a job that means something to you. During our school years, this was something that we never got taught despite it being a lot more important than Pythagoras Theorem. Without NCS we may never have learnt about it, but thankfully we did, and I came back from the session feeling a lot more confident and relaxed about finding a job, something that becomes a huge pressure when you finish school.

Debating. As someone who has always been uninterested in politics and the laws we have today, it was surprising when we debated about matters such as the voting age, abortion rights, euthanasia and legalizing drugs, and I realised just how passionate I am about these matters. This seems like quite a pressuring session, as too often people tend to go with the majority vote. But after a lot of encouragement from not only our team leaders, but each other that there was no right or wrong answer, we felt free to express our opinions, explain our points and had a lot of fun doing it. Furthermore, we were free not to take part in debates we weren’t comfortable with and everyone listened to and respected each other, meaning there was no negative tension. I left this session feeling like a new person after discovering how certain matters mean a lot to me and we all had smiles on our faces.

At the end of this week, I was given the opportunity of a life time (as if NCS wasn’t exciting enough already) and got asked to go to Capital FM and interview Bogge, Matt and Jojo alongside three friends who were also taking part in NCS. This was an exciting and incredible opportunity that I will never forget, and it just goes to prove that you can get a lot more from saying ‘YES to NCS’ than you initially think. We all did well, and I’m so proud of my friends who also took part in this as it was proof that we had all gained so much confidence since day 1, a change that myself, my family and my friends saw clearly in me.

We all had a disco to celebrate the end of our residential weeks at NCS where we bossed the Macarena, showed off our terrible dance moves, and simply just had fun and connected again as a group. That night was one I won’t forget.

Weeks 3 and 4 were nothing short of tiring, but in the end, it was all worth it. We decided as a whole team to raise money for the RNLI with a Race Night, stalls and one mighty cold sea dip. We all worked together during week 3 to plan and prepare for this, assigning different jobs to everyone so that we were all kept busy and hardworking. Don’t mistake these couple of weeks for being boring though, because although planning and preparing can get very exhausting, my NCS family and reminders that what we were doing benefits others kept the experience lively and meaningful. I certainly had a lot of fun coming up with horse names with my friends!!!

We set up Tombola, face painting and name the teddy stalls in both Redcar and Guisborough, as well as walking around with buckets to collect donations from people who, like us, care about the wellbeing and safety of others. Money collecting may seem slightly scary or perhaps even boring, but with your friends, anything can be fun. My friends and I even made up a little song and dance as we walked down the street!!

Our race night was one that took me by surprise. As a person who often refrains from getting their hopes up, the staggering turn out of people definitely put a smile on my face! Naturally, there was a lot of competitiveness in the room from those who had bet on horses and wanted to win one of our fabulous prizes. This kept things laughable and interesting, especially as Melissa was shouting louder than anyone else in the room! The positive atmosphere made the Race Night one of the best at NCS and although we were hard at work, there was an easy, relaxing vibe about the place. I didn’t want to go home! At the end of the night when I finally went to bed, I realised just how tired I was, but you would never have guessed it when caught up in the joy of laughs, smiles and a whole lot of cheering.

The morning of the sea dip is without a doubt, one to remember! I remember spending forever fretting over the possible icy temperature of the water, convinced I would be shivering uncontrollably once I was in it. However, as we all stood in line, holding hands and then finally speeding towards the sea, it was a whole lot warmer than I thought. Whether that was because we were running, or because I was too caught up in the laughs and squeals coming from everyone including myself remains a question, though if I had to bet on one, it would be the latter. We all had such a fun time water fighting, though I’m surprised I didn’t need the RNLI after about 4 people splashed me at once, and I could have stayed in the sea with my friends all day. Roll on the boxing day dip!!!

So, after 4 weeks of what has been the best 4 weeks of my life so far, we raised over £3000 for the RNLI, meaning we reached over our goal. I couldn’t be prouder of everyone who took part, including the team leaders who played a huge roll in making this experience the best it could be. We’ve faced fears, conquered mountains, braved challenges, and came out of it as an NCS family (alive, thankfully). If I had to go back and do it again, I wouldn’t just do it once, I’d do it a thousand more times (though maybe not kayaking. It’s not a strength of mine if almost falling out of the kayak is anything to go by). I’ve made life-long friends, grew more confident with each passing day, and I’ve loved every second of it.

So, for anyone who wants to belong to something great, for anyone who wants to make friends for life, for anyone who wants to challenge themselves to be the best they can be, take my advice and make the best decision of your life.

After all, it all starts with a YES.

Sea Dip Surprise- By Caitlyn Seymour

Now, you see running into the North Sea at 10 o’clock in the morning with a bunch of people you only met a few weeks ago may not seem like everyone’s cup of tea but I was certainly up for it. Having never done a fundraising idea like this before, I immediately thought of the plan as a fun and enthralling event which would not only challenge me physically but mentally too.
When the suggestion was first brought to the table back in week three, I was a tad anxious about the idea of stepping out of my little comfort zone and trying something different. But, after much thought and a lot of worrying about what could go wrong, I finally grew to the idea.
The day of the Sea Dip finally came around like a grey cloud on a gloomy day, and a mixed feeling of excitement and nervousness was brewing about me and the rest of our NCS lot, whilst preparing to take our plunge into the cold depths of the murky water. However, it was time, we had to it. The sponsor money was in and the charity (RNLI) was implanted into all our minds. We couldn’t back out now, not after coming so far.
We did it! We finally made it into the sea. The freezing temperatures of the water didn’t change our moods. Still in high spirits, we splashed around, dunking our shoulders into the water and giggling as Morgan chased a screaming, wet Ellie with seaweed. She was terrified. After soaking each other, Melissa challenged us to swim back to shore. Overall, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to do something amazing for a brilliant charity.
After taking the dive, a sense of achievement, pride and relief hit me all at once, as I realised it wasn’t as bad as I thought it’d be. A chaotic rumble distilled around the beach as fellow teammates and friends quickly ran to parents and relatives for hot drinks and soft towels to warm them up. The atmosphere around was surreal as, the sound of ‘congratulations’ and ‘I can’t believe you did that’ milled about the seafront and lifeboat station.
In the end, it was such a fantastic, exhilarating and exciting end to an amazing four weeks and I wouldn’t have chosen to have anyone else by my side other than all of the inspirational team leaders, assistants and people of Wave 2!! Thank you for this remarkable opportunity and I would recommend to anyone looking for an action-packed, entertaining start to their summer holidays.

My New Adopted NCS Family. By James Tomlinson-Wrenn

The past four weeks have been like no other I have ever experienced before. I, personally, think I have developed in so many different ways thanks to the NCS team.

Before I went to NCS I was really nervous that I wouldn’t make friends because I didn’t have many in school, I never thought that when people said I’d make friends that it was true. On the first day, I was welcomed, “adopted” as one of my new friends put it, into two massive friendship groups. On the second day I felt like I had known them for years. As the first week of adventures passed, I had gotten to know most of the people I would be spending most of my time with and grew to care for them. We could all joke and laugh as freely as we liked because nobody cared who you were or who you are because they’re having fun and not stuck in a world of social media. After the first week ended and I had two days at home, it felt wrong to not be around my new friends and companions and my mood seemed to changed. I felt lost to not be with my friends but that only inspired me more to talk to them and plan on meeting up with them after the programme would finish.

Second week started, I knew we were all really excited as we gathered in our groups of friends and felt relief as we were surrounded by those familiar faces and voices. In this week, we learnt a lot about each other personally like what we do and don’t like to do in terms of social activities and political or general knowledge. Everyone seemed to bond more by this point as we had more interests to talk about. Even the teams’ leaders were really approachable and friendly and acted like one of the kids, at the right times of course! During this week we had a disco, we all met in a big “wedding room” and waited for something to start. In this time, me and my friends were bored, so I started singing and they joined in, which I would never do In front of anyone before that day, and turned it into a mini karaoke. We had a ball! During this disco we bonded over our silly dance skills and music taste. This week, unfortunately, eventually came to an end. As I got home I found myself feeling the same was as after the first week. Luckily, my group of friends had a group chat where we talked the forty-eight hours away about how we missed the company of each other and the team leaders.

Third week eventually rolled up, we couldn’t wait to start planning our social action project. We all greeted each other and were all relieved to be back in each other’s’ company. We made our minds up, as a group, on what charity we wanted to donate to and managed to bond further over our interests of charities and which we thought took more priority. Then we found out how tough the week ahead was going to be as we started planning. Our group managed to stay positive with cheesy jokes and funny fails that kept our spirits high. The week wasn’t as bad as we thought it was though, even though the sun made us all tired and moody and it felt like such hard work at the time, I’m glad we planned the way we did because we got to teach each other new skills. We also got to show people what we were made of and prove the stereotype of a teenagers wrong by planning a great social action to raise money for charity. By the end of this week our small group of friends knew for definite that we would stay friends for a long time and plan trip out together. We passed the days off away with our usual chatter about how we envy people’s fashion sense and sense of humour.

The fourth and final week rocked up, I began to feel slightly emotional. I had spent most of my summer with the same people that I’ve grown to love and care for, not just as friends but as family as well. I knew that this was the last week we would see the whole of our group of forty and the team leaders. Our small friendship group was sad to see it slowly come to an end. We didn’t want it to stop. We strode our way through fourth week laughing and smiling, enjoying what we had planned by staying together and making memories I never thought would happen. The final Sunday came to an end and we realised that that was the last day our friends would be at NCS together. One of us would be on holiday the next day and would miss our final day of NCS. I know I felt scared that it was coming to an end as it would soon mean we would return back to the world and soon have to face our results and college. I knew I would miss the team leaders and how they treated us like adults and let us get on in our free time. I also knew that I would miss our whole group even if since of them were slightly annoying, I wouldn’t have had them any other way!

I can safely say that saying “yes to NCS” was one of the best decisions I have ever made, if I could go back and do it again I would. Nothing from these four weeks has put me off because I’ve learnt so many skills and have become a much more confident person.

My unforgettable NCS experience – by Eve Edwards

My amazing journey started with the letters Y-E-S! It all started when I saw the stall in my school dinner hall; I was instantly drawn to the excitement of it all. The idea of going on an adventure week, doing fantastic things I wouldn’t have thought I’d ever get the chance to do. Now here I am writing this finishing up the last week of NCS.
At first, I had my doubts I didn’t want to go by myself – scared of being away from home, not being able to make new friends. Now I wonder all that worrying was for nothing! By the end of the first week everyone was just starting to bond and our wave was becoming more like a family. I am leaving NCS with the most amazing new friends, because I had the confidence to sign up! I can’t imagine not being friends with them now. NCS gives you the confidence to speak to more people you didn’t necessarily already know – it may not feel like it to begin with, but as my journey with NCS comes to a close I see and feel a change in myself, my confidence and self-esteem have grown massively and my respect for others, and while at NCS I realised that everyone is equal! We are not separated into cliques: the popular, the unpopular, the nerds; seeing everyone for who they are makes you grow as a person.
My first week at NCS, we travelled to Grasmere, in the Lake District. We had a few troubles along the way, our bus got a flat tyre but that gave us young people a chance to mix. One of the NCS principles – social mixing – so before we even fully began the week everyone got a head start when getting to know each other.
Our first activity as Team 1 was the mountain adventure! It was a rather difficult challenge, however with determination we reached the peak of the mountain, and collected the most flags, meaning we had the most points flying passed the other teams; but that mountain walk was about more than just competition. The mountain gave us the chance to prove to ourselves and others that we could accomplish anything we put our minds to, and although we struggled we stayed together as a team, to finally finish the day with pride, and a sense of strength and accomplishment.
More unforgettable moments in the first week, were the on-sight challenge, gorge scrambling and kayaking! Before gorge scrambling, I was petrified as I have a fear of heights, though during the activity I found myself jumping of the biggest drop on the gorge because I realised ‘I’m not going to get another chance to do this’ so I went for it; I don’t regret a single second of it. Kayaking was also good fun for our group as people crashed into each other from every direction, and got to learn the real technique of kayaking. When we reached the beach on the other side of the lake the instructors let us go for a swim (I’m thankful I still had my life jacket on as part way into the lake the floor disappeared!) By the end of the activity we were all hyped and excited but, Thea and I believed that it was not kayaking without someone capsizing, so for a good 20 minutes we were trying to push each other over (unfortunately it didn’t work) but it was great fun and give us time to bond as friends rather than just team mates.
Phase 2 went by so fast, as they say ‘time flies when you’re having fun.’ The first day of phase 2 was public speaking (speaking to a large audience) and before we even sat down to start I made my mind up that I wasn’t going to do it, because I didn’t have a vast amount of confidence in myself as a person. People are baffled that I am able to perform on stage in front of a large audience, but I’m unable to keep a steady head while just speaking, they say it’s the same thing. Well it’s not for me it’s a completely different concept. I’m confident speaking to people I feel comfortable around and know quite well, but not people I hardly know; that’s why I was so adamant that I wasn’t going to take part, but I did and I couldn’t be more thankful for it, as doing things that scare you help build character and confidence.
Phase 2 was a lot of fun the leaders and team assistants organised 2 discos for our wave in the sporting lodge, and it was so much fun, having everyone being involved, having fun together rather than in their separate friendship groups. I even taught Hamza how to do the hype dance. I think during the second week, that’s when I really came out my shell as a person, so everyone got to see the real, me.
Phase 3 and 4 took some hard work and planning, but it was all for a good cause and in the end we ended up raising more than our target amount for our chosen charity. During our third week, we realised the difficulty of planning an event; we got to experience the responsibility and hard work it takes to organise something so big. All our hard work payed off. We successfully raised a lot of money for the RNLI. We also took part in a sea dip, which was a load of fun, running in as one big group, having a water fight, water coming from every direction that I had to keep my eyes closed. For all I know I might not have been splashing anyone at all; squatting down into the water up to my shoulders, which quite frankly was rather refreshing (considering I was screaming at the top of my lungs) I tried to push Caitlyn over so she’d land head first into the water, but that didn’t work out so well she managed to latch on to Morgan.
Overall I’m over the moon with everyone in my wave, we have come so far and so have the leaders and team assistants, they worked so hard to make our NCS experience the best it could be. I’m extremely upset that it’s all over, and I already can’t wait to see everyone at graduation. I want to do it all over again, and I would happily become a team assistant!
Thank you, NCS you have made my summer one to remember and I couldn’t be more grateful for everything!

I said yes….best decision ever? By Ellie Pegden

Summing up Week 1 of NCS is something that would take a lot of words. There were highs and lows (often quite literally) and the whole experience was a rollercoaster of emotions that, as I sit at home writing this, makes me desperate to relive it again and again. We went, we saw, we conquered. We sang some songs (#TeamFalafel), we built some fires, we swam in some lakes. We lived, we learned and we laughed. It was a trip like no other, and something I think everyone needs to know about, but then needs to go and do for themselves…
As a socially anxious person, meeting new people (and just spending time with people in general) is terrifying, and the idea of spending five days constantly surrounded by people – who, for the most part, were total strangers – was a daunting prospect. Sure, I’d made sure to ‘take a mate’ and arrived with three close friends, but the number of people on the bus in comparison to our little group was scary. Working it out, I only knew six people in my wave before Friday. I can know say that during the five days I was in Grasmere, I have spoken to everyone there at least once. I’ve made new friends and laughed so much these last few days that my cheeks are hurting and maybe a two-day break to recover is a good thing. Still, it’s too quiet being at home without the girls in my room. I’m already missing our impromptu dancing and singing and the constant snacking and laughing. Meeting new people was scary, but once the awkward introductions were over, it was totally worth it.
For me, participating in the activities was another level of fear altogether. My previous experiences with outdoor pursuits is hardly one to gloat about, and the mere thought of gorge scrambling or a mountain adventure was enough to make me regret my decision. But, as I got to know my team (#TeamFalafel) and we all started on building shelters and fires (it was a miracle the trees didn’t burn down) I started to ease into it more, and gradually found myself enjoying it, until later that afternoon I was gorge scrambling and living my best life. Things like that don’t happen in Teesside. We don’t swim in lakes or chant as we trek up a mountain. You don’t push yourself and achieve stuff like that sat at home bingeing on Netflix.
So, what was the highlight of my trip? Easily the end of the mountain adventure on Sunday. The satisfaction when we made it up to Easedale Tarn on Sunday afternoon (in relentless sun, I might add) was a feeling I can’t really compare to any other. Perhaps I was sweating like a pig and had no water, and Megan was burnt and Caitlyn was dead on the floor and Hamza was meditating, but there was immense pride when we all arrived at that lake, staggering towards some grass (thankfully it was sheep poo free) whilst Sam went to dunk his head in the lake for some lad points. We’d already made it to the top of Helm Crag, and – in spite of aching legs and hot weather – we’d somehow made it to this lake and were relishing in the fact that 1) we’d survived that walk, and 2) the scenery and views from there were stunning. Sunday’s walk was a true team building moment (we developed our own chant) and – although my neck kills from sunburn – I’d love to repeat it.
Maybe it was pouring with rain, and maybe the basement wasn’t the best smelling place, but the Monday night was an NCS memory that will probably stick with me forever. Along with the rest of my friends, I was a part of an impromptu disco in the basement, belting out Mamma Mia! Hits (I’m aware now that I can’t sing) and dancing to the Cha Cha Slide in leggings and a baggy t-shirt. Maybe I looked like Shrek, and maybe I looked like I’d been dragged backwards through a bush, but you know what? I was living my best life. Surrounded by friends – old and new – I found myself learning what it’s like to have a good time, especially seeing as though my experience was free of any drama that comes with a school residential.
Simultaneously one of the most action-packed yet relaxed four days of my life, NCS phase 1 was definitely a week to remember. I said ‘yes’ to NCS, and I learned things about myself (and did things) I never thought I could. I made new friends, I had fun and I laughed until I couldn’t laugh anymore. Being at home is too quiet, so I may have already started my packing for Phase 2. I can’t wait to be reunited with the rest of Team Falafel & Co. I miss them so much.
Roll on Phase 2!!

Zetland FM Live NCS Interviews

It’s always a joy to meet the many young people who join Imagineyoucanuk over the summer. Today we met the first team for Summer 2018; Freya Atkinson, Jack Kennedy-Barker, Joe Keegans and Emily Fitzgerald (front) from Sacred Heart School and Huntcliff School.

If you missed them, here’s another chance to listen –
http://mixcloud.com/zetlandfm/zetland-fm-morning-mix-hour-3-266

Zetland FM Live NCS interviews

If you missed Ryan Wold, Patricia Todd, Rosie Turner and Matthew Beevis (front) from project 2 of Imagineyoucanuk Sunmer 2018, here’s another chance to hear about their social action project for the Redcar RNLI – https://www.mixcloud.com/zetlandfm/zetland-fm-morning-mix-hour-3-268/

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