Volunteering for the National Citizenship Service

So, I like to help out and raise funds for a local charity, Bolton Lads and Girls club.

They run the National Citizen Service here in Bolton.

What did I get form it?

I was a little apprehensive at first, as we would be put in front of a group of young people and we would need to help them with the challenges they were tasked with completing through the day. The ‘lego’ game, writing a CV and other communication challenges.

They had been on a residential placement up in Scotland the week before doing all sorts of outdoor activities and had spent all that time getting to know each other over this time. Now they were living together and having to cook for themselves as part of an independent living phase.

Knowing teenagers a little, having younger siblings, made me worry a little as sometimes they find it hard to take direction or productive feedback.

I was really surprised to find that there was a real mixed bunch of kids. Some who I would worry about a little, just being honest! And then others who I would be surprised if they didn’t go on to produce great things.

Complete contrast

I was asked at first to give a quick introduction to the group about who I was and what I did.

After explaining about Tao Digital Marketing and my previous ventures including Comms Consult I then asked if they had any questions for me.

Well, I was not expecting the response I got. One of the young lads in the group effectively put me through a full interview, well that’s what it felt like anyways!haha

What tools do you use within your business? How long have you been doing it? What do you need in terms of skills to work in digital marketing? What turnover does your business have? Yes, he actually got the the point where he was interrogating me over my business performance!haha

Now, I think some people would see this as a little intrusive. I personally loved the fact that he had never met me but had the courage to ask that type of question. He even, at the end of the morning, asked me for my contact details in case he didn’t manage to progress with his architecture career!

On the flip side to this, there was a young girl who was probably what we used to term, back in school, one of the ‘it’ girls. Came across as if life owed her something. After a bit of time talking with her and trying to understand what she wanted and how she was going to go about this ‘action plan’ she came out of her shell a bit more and seemed to interact with the rest of the group a bit better.

Overall, I really enjoyed the experience. I think it was very rewarding to help in some way the next generation of employees, business owners and to see that there are still some young people out there who are going to take this world and make it there own!