St Andrew's Hospice was mentioned during a debate in the House of Commons about the National Citizen Service Bill.

It's not often we're mentioned in the House of Commons, but it has happened this week! 

A debate took place about the National Citizen Service (NCS) Bill. More than 300,000 young people have taken part in the programme nationwide, and the hospice has a great partnership with local participants.

The young people involved in this area regularly attend events on our behalf, and recently revamped a garden and play area within the children's hospice.

Cleethorpes MP Martin Vickers (pictured) told the Commons that St Andrew's was one of the NCS projects he had seen first-hand.

"My constituency has had considerable success with the NCS," he said. "When the scheme started, just 45 people joined the initial cohort, but the number of participants has now increased to more than 1,200.

"Representing a coastal community with the problems of poor educational standards and the like, I recognise the important role that the NCS has played. Those who participate gain new skills, enhance their CVs and are helped with the transition from school to further education. The value of the scheme has been recognised, certainly in the North East Lincolnshire part of my constituency, by the fact that every secondary school and academy has signed up to the programme, along with the two colleges, which are both working to integrate the NCS into their curriculums.

"Over the past three or four years, I have visited many projects in the constituency. They include, to mention just three, the St Andrew’s Hospice in Grimsby, the Harbour Place centre for the homeless and the Alzheimer’s Society, which a number of young people did some work for.

"If we can develop the natural skills and enthusiasm of our young people, they will make a major contribution, through the NCS, to society. The scheme gives them a sense of satisfaction, a growing sense of self-confidence and a realisation that by giving to the community in which they live, they can not only fulfil many of their own aspirations, but contribute greatly to the society and community in which they live."

It was being discussed because the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Karen Bradley, made a request for the Bill to be read a second time, which will secure the future of the NCS through a royal charter.

Read the full debate here.


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