Posted: December 15, 2020
Students meet Olympic athletes as part of their ongoing National Citizenship Service programme. This programme gives students the opportunity to gain new experiences and develop important skills with fun tasks, sports, and These guests included, Inline Skating World Champion Jenna Downing who won 10 British Championships and a silver medal at the X-Games by the age of 21. Also, James Kirton and Adam Whitehead two breaststroke specialist who competed for Team GB with James competing in 2008 Olympics in Beijing, and Adam competing in the year 2000 Olympics, in Sydney. Along with these was former Professional Rugby League Player, Paul Broadbent, who played at representative level for Great Britain and England.
These professional Athletes and former Olympians took time out of their busy schedules to work with students and help them develop both their teamwork skills and their confidence. 37 Sport and Animal Care students got the chance to take part in sport-themed team building activities and listened to the Olympians talk about their lives and careers. This was a great opportunity for our NCS participants to see where they could get with determination and hard work, as well as a good chance for them to develop their skills for the future.
This was not the only experience our NCS students got the chance to take part in over the past two weeks, as their timetables were choc-a-block with fun and challenging activities. The programme has seen students take part in a huge number of tasks and activities including team building tasks, escape rooms, first aid training, employability workshops, CV writing, and even rap battles. Jan Budtz, the Head of NCS at Club Doncaster Foundation, commented “NCS offers Doncaster College students a fantastic opportunity to challenge themselves, explore new horizons, meet new people and in the process gain new and transferable skills, maturity and confidence.” Due to the impact of the pandemic, the programme this year had to be run completely within College, however staff and students didn’t let this stop them from making the most of the opportunity.
NCS participants also used these two weeks to fundraise for Age UK as part of their social action project, focusing on supporting the elderly who are having to live in isolation during the pandemic. Students got their trainers on and as a group ran the distance from Doncaster to Leeds, on the treadmills in College. A small group of students took turns to run as far as they could to add miles to their total. Amazingly the students pushed themselves to their limits and managed to run the 33 miles in one day.
The staff were also roped in on the fundraising fun as Sports tutors Darran and Mark, and Public Services tutor Josh, took part in a sponsored wax. With a little help from Doncaster College Beauty students, the three tutors got their legs waxed in the name of charity.
Aside from all the fun activities and charity work, the NCS programme serves to help students develop their skills and gain great experience for their future. Sport tutor Darran commented “NCS benefits all students, no matter their level of academic ability or chosen vocational area. The progression seen in these students has been awe inspiring, ranging from improving confidence, instilling leadership skills, building new friendships and enabling them to apply skills in an interactive way.”