How NCS changed my life: Akeley woman on her full circle experience with service

Nathalie Hogg (purple T-shirt) takes part in a trip away with the NCS in 2014
Nathalie Hogg (purple T-shirt) takes part in a trip away with the NCS in 2014

Action 4 Youth’s new project worker Nathalie Hogg has spoken about her ‘full circle’ experience with the National Citizen Service (NCS).

Four years ago, Nathalie, who lives in Akeley Wood, was part of a class of students that representatives from the NCS spoke to during a school visit.

Action 4 Youth project worker Nathalie Hogg (right) leads a group of students on an NCS trip away in 2017

Action 4 Youth project worker Nathalie Hogg (right) leads a group of students on an NCS trip away in 2017

Nathalie was inspired to go on the programme and said ‘her confidence shot through the roof’ after the trip away.

Nathalie is now a Project Worker at Action4Youth, imparting her knowledge and experience to the next generation of young people who are keen to learn new skills and grow in confidence in the way that she did.

By going full circle Nathalie now has ‘a great sense of pride and achievement.’

Here is Nathalie’s story in her own words:

“When I was seventeen years old, the National Citizen Service (NCS) team visited my school to deliver a presentation about the programme.

“I had never been a particularly loud and confident young person and a personal development programme like the NCS looked to be something that would do me the world of good.

“During the summer, I met tons of great new people, including one of my (now) best friends, and learnt a lot about myself as a person.

“I remember on our first week away, gripping my harness until my knuckles turned white and screaming so loud on a giant swing that I lost my voice!

“My confidence shot through the roof after my NCS summer.

“I found myself developing a passion for philanthropy and an eagerness to work with young people.

“The experience was transformational in every sense of the word and I suddenly became a much more outgoing person.

“Since graduating from the programme in 2014, I have volunteered and worked as both an assistant and team leader in the summer, working to ensure that today’s young people have an incredible experience, just like I did.

“Now, four years on, I find myself working full time as part of that same NCS team.

“It is very much a ‘full circle’ experience for me and it gives me a great sense of pride and achievement to be able to work for the charity that provided me with the life-changing opportunity that is NCS.

“I do not use the phrase ‘life-changing’ lightly; it is astounding how much impact three weeks in the summer holidays with great people, new experiences and a little courage can have on a person.”