Author: Rea Stuart
I first did NCS as a participant in 2017 when I was just 16, I came from high school with no idea what I wanted to do over summer and thought this would be an opportunity of a lifetime to learn new skills, meet new people and to conquer some of my fears - I was absolutely right!
When I first took part in NCS I was very quiet and kept to myself, I found that when I took part in NCS I became a different person and developed skills to become more confident within myself and grow as a person. NCS gave me life skills such as; public speaking, team building, first aid etc.
Taking part in NCS has given me the opportunity to work on NCS programmes as a seasonal staff member growing from volunteer to assistant team leader and recently Team Leader and take part in many different opportunities within NCS and the Bradford City FC Community Foundation.
After Graduating from NCS I joined the youth board where myself and other graduates had a say in what the programme would look like the following year and express any social action ideas we had with the NCS team leaders.
Following on from this I was given an amazing opportunity in 2018 to be able to fundraise to go on an international trip to Vietnam, during this fundraiser we were able to run a race night for our families to attend, supermarket bag packing and so much more.
During the international volunteering trip to Vietnam we was able to volunteer at a place called the ‘Friendship village’ where we helped out alongside the teachers to play games with the children who had a wide range of disabilities and to teach them English, after a week of volunteering we was able to travel to many of the different places in vietnam to see their culture and what amazing things Vietnam had to offer.
Being given these opportunities was amazing and helped me to get a better understanding of different cultures and to be able to improve my own communication skills with a wide range of different people. I was also able to see and help plan out the different aspects of the NCS programme for the upcoming participants.
I joined Bradford City FC Community Foundation's employability programme in 2021 during COVID-19, this programme helped me to enhance my already achieved skills and make myself more employable than I was before, this programme was useful to me as I was out of work due to the Covid pandemic and didn't have enough skills and knowledge to obtain the job that I wanted.
The employability programme has now led me on to being able to work at Bradford City FC Community Foundation on other programmes such as the Kickstart scheme and the Year of Service.
I first started my kickstart position the month of September 2021, this position was an assistant youth worker role. I chose this role because it fit what I want to do as a full time job at the time, this role gave me the opportunity to be able to learn how to organise different sessions for young people to attend and how I would be able to keep them safe in these environments, within this role I completed my safeguarding training, obtained knowledge and better understanding of young people taking on board what I already know from working on NCS.
I have since changed into a new role that was an opportunity for me to get better skills for employability and more skills to be able to be a step closer to the job I want to be in. The staff at Bradford City community foundation are always so helpful when I am starting on something I have never done before, they are always extremely encouraging especially when working on projects to help the local community.
My Year of service Health and wellbeing activator role started in January 2022 and is my current job at Bradford City FC Community Foundation, within this role I have been given different training opportunities by the NCS Trust and EFL Trust to carry out my job to the best of my abilities some of these training opportunities range from project management, social action campaigning and planning, communication and resilience workshops I have also been given training from the Community Foundation to be qualified in First aid and mental health first aid.
So far with this specific job role I have worked on projects with the Community Foundation such as PAC, Premier League Kicks, Fit Fans, Life Goals and NCS Changemakers, some of which I have had the chance to plan and deliver my own sessions, communicate with the local community and business.