Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

home

Follow us on: facebook logo

National Citizen Service explained

National Citizen Service explainedNational Citizen Service (NCS) gives 16- and 17-year-olds in England the chance to help out their community, build their skills, meet new people and try new things.

What is National Citizen Service?

National Citizen Service (NCS) starts with a residential trip, usually lasting a couple of weeks with a couple of days break at home in the middle. During this time, you'll live with a team of 15-25 other people on the NCS programme, usually in a youth hostel or university halls of residence. You'll spend the time taking part in a range of activities, which could include rock climbing, archery and raft building, as well as learning a variety of skills and getting to know the rest of your team. You'll also have the chance to find out more about organizations in your community, and the people who work with them.

After this, your team will use the skills you've learned to run a project for the local community, such as setting up a fundraising event. You'll choose the project you want to do yourselves.

Finally, there's a graduation ceremony, where your achievements will be recognized and you'll receive your NCS certificate signed by the prime minister.

Who can do NCS?

NCS is open to anyone aged 16 or 17 in England - you don't need any qualifications or experience. However, there are a limited number of places, so apply quickly to avoid missing out.

How much does NCS cost?

You'll pay a fee when you apply that won't be more than £50, but if you can't afford it, contact your local NCS provider - they should be able to help you out. After that, there won't be any extra costs - your transport, food and activities are all paid for.

How do I apply for NCS?

NCS runs in spring, summer and autumn, lining up with the school holidays. You'll apply to a local provider for a place. If you know who your provider is, you can get in touch with them directly. Otherwise, you can fill in your details on the NCS website to get an information pack that will help you apply.

What if I'm too old?

If you're over 17, you won't be able to do NCS - but you can still get involved. As a volunteer, you can support young people through the NCS programme while getting valuable experience and training for yourself.

Related links