2013 August

National Citizen’s Service

Last week, representing the Dame Kelly Holmes Legacy Trust, I was brought in to inspire a group of young people involved in Stafford National Citizens Service but came away feeling hugely inspired myself!

The group of local 16 and 17 year old school leavers from various different backgrounds, had clearly bonded well on residential at the PGL Centre in Shropshire, and I felt privileged to join in their ‘Home Residential’. During this section of the project, the young people were living away from home together (many for the first time), having to organise group meals, budget, shop and clean in preparation for busy days on the project.

Prior to my visit, a workshop on goal setting had been run by reigning Commonwealth Champion, Louise Hazel, and I’m glad I wasn’t aware I’d be following such a superstar! I ran an interactive workshop focusing on the importance of planning, using my Paralympic experience. We went outside and everyone got involved in a fun multi-activity session using a variety of challenging tasks for the teams to plan and coordinate.

I was hugely impressed with the attitude of the group as a whole. Although the tasks were challenging, everyone got involved and the teamwork was remarkable.

The group is now preparing for their Social Action Projects, where they plan and develop their own initiatives, aiming to make positive impacts in things in the community that matter to them. It is always a pleasure to be involved in the NCS and I can see that these young people have far to go – thank you for involving me.

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