Funding news

National Citizen Service evaluated - 17 May 2012

The National Citizen’s Service pilot has been hailed a success with an estimated £1 to £2 social return for every £1 invested, according to an independent report published today.

However, the report also highlighted that improvements are needed if the National Citizen Service, the government volunteering programme for 16-year-olds, is to build on the success of last year's pilot programmes.

Evaluation of National Citizen Service Pilots Interim Report by NatCen Social Research, the Office for Public Management and New Philanthropy Capital, says the Cabinet Office and Department for Education should consider longer lead-in times to ease staffing and recruitment, longer contracts for programme providers, and greater flexibility in the organisation of activities.

Other key findings:

  • 95 per cent of participants would recommend the programme
  • 77 per cent of participants said they are now more likely to help out locally
  • 85 per cent of participants said they felt more positive towards people from different social backgrounds

The programme provides a combination of residential weeks and volunteering projects for young people. It was attended by 8,500 young people last year at a cost of £14.2m. The number of places is expected to rise to 30,000 this summer and 90,000 by 2014. It has also been announced that a condensed version of the NCS would be introduced in the autumn for those unable to attend over the summer.

The full report is available from the NatCen website.

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