Ten year 11 pupils from Horsham and Crawley spent four weeks in August taking part in National Citizen Service (NCS).
For one week these young people were gardening together with a group from The Butterfly Project to transform a local overgrown church garden. The Butterfly Project is a charity working with adults who have learning difficulties.
After spending a week working together with The Butterfly Project the young people decided to hold a fundraising event to support this charity. Young NCS volunteers managed to raise just over £100 by holding a raffle with goods donated by local people living in Horsham.
NCS volunteers held an event on October 25 to present the £100 cheque to The Butterfly Project.
The Butterfly Project manager Richard James said: “Together we made fast progress with clearing the overgrown garden so that it can be used again by the church and other community groups. Our team really enjoyed engaging with the guys and girls from the YMCA. This experience really helped build confidence within our group and break down barriers between the two groups in the community”.
National Citizen Service is a chance for young people to spend their summer investing in their personal development, making a difference to the community and above all, having fun. NCS is a government initiative that’s coordinated nationally by Catch22 and delivered locally by Sussex Central YMCA.
Sussex Central YMCA, NCS Team Leader Tracey Wilkes said: “NCS is a great chance for young people to do something memorable with their summer. They learn new skills but most importantly have a great time. This experience is also a great addition to their CV as it shows to future employers that these young people have initiative.”
As part of their four week NCS the year 11 pupils from Horsham and Crawley spent one week taking part in outdoor activities in Swanage and a week camping in Lancing. An important part of the NCS is doing something that would benefit the local community, so the young people spent last week of their NCS gardening.
Dean McBride, one of the young people taking part, said: “NCS bought everyone together to work as a team, especially on the gardening project. I thoroughly enjoyed the rock climbing and because of that I am now thinking of having a career as an outdoors instructor.”