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NCS Social Action Projects make a Real Impact

An inspirational group of over 60 young people of all faiths have spent the summer devising, planning and delivering social action projects as part of JLGB’s National Citizen Service (NCS) Programme. It has never been more important for young people of different faiths to unite and work together to change society.

The three week programme unites young people of different faiths and backgrounds through adventure activities, social cohesion sessions, development of a chosen skill and visits to charities and businesses. These visits serve as inspiration for the young people to create their own social action projects to bring awareness to a variety of charities and causes that they are passionate about. Participants took their ideas to a tough panel of judges in a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style pitch, bidding for up to £500 to support their projects.

Having successfully secured funding, the teens' ideas came to life. Groups on NCS are split by their chosen skill to develop including photography, film, digital, catering and sport. Each group’s social action project used their skill as a medium to raise money or awareness for a cause that was important to them. JLGB are incredibly proud of all five groups for their phenomenal projects and to see young people of different faiths and backgrounds working so cohesively with people who just a few weeks prior were strangers, to drive change in their communities. It is this unique quality of NCS that makes it such a special programme and so highly regarded by universities and future employers.

Team USB used the digital skills they learned from their trip to Soapbox Islington and The Mix to tackle the issue of loneliness in the elderly community. They took the digital world by storm, forming a campaign named TeachGrannysTech in which they created a website with handbooks explaining to the elderly how to use modern day technology in order to stay in contact with their loved ones. As well as this innovative website they also went into Redbridge Jewish Care to teach their members how to use technology. The Sport Group, Sportacus, set out to show the public how sport can be adapted to be an inclusive environment for people with disabilities. They worked with Wheelpower and Scope to successfully run a charity stall in a busy shopping centre in Hendon raising both money and awareness. The photography group, Landmarks, used the skills they learned from photographer Amir Nathan to take photos highlighting the problem of litter in London. Their photos were then edited with skills learned over the course of NCS. They displayed their photos in Russell Square in the form of a pop up art gallery named Litterallywasted, and raised both money and awareness for two charities, Keep Britain Tidy and Hubbub.

The catering group, Stir Fried Rice, created an innovative cook book for low income families. It showcased a number of recipes at minimal cost using kosher ingredients. They then dispatched the cook books with every GIFT delivery that month (GIFT is a charity which delivers Kosher Meals to those in need). Alongside this they set up a stall in Borough market where they sold kosher food to raise money for GIFT. Finally, the Film Group The Red Carpet Club went on trips to the Media Trust and ITN Productions. They used the skills they learned on these trips to create a video campaign tackling male domestic abuse to raise awareness working alongside the charity Respect.

Their achievements will be recognised in October at a Graduation Ceremony. The participants will present their projects to their parents, charity representatives and community guests including JLGB president Lord Levy, and head teachers from faith schools. Each participant will then be awarded a certificate signed by Prime Minister Theresa May, in recognition of their fantastic contribution to society.

Charlie Sneader, NCS powered by JLGB 2018 participant said:

“It was a great experience meeting people my age from so many backgrounds that I wouldn’t usually get the chance to meet. From learning photography skills, we were able to turn these into an incredible Social Action Project that I, and my fellow team members, can be proud of.”

Becky Brookman, JLGB’s Head of Youth Engagement said:

“It has been fantastic to watch this group of multi-faith young people go on a journey together, starting from a point of not knowing each other and ending by working as a group to deliver projects that positively impact the wider community, and have the potential to continue to do so for years to come.”

Watch the full video of the ‘Dragon’s Den’ HERE

NCS will return next summer for anyone in school years 11-12 (aged 16-18).

Register your interest at www.jlgb.org/ncs and be the first to receive updates on when applications open, or for more information call 020 3857 5905.

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