My NCS Experience | Week 2

If you read my previous blog post, then you will know that last week I took part in the second week of my NCS programme. If, however, you didn't know that and want to find out more about what I got up to in my first week, check out the post HERE.

So the second week was all about learning a new skill and becoming more independent. We spent Monday - Friday living in university accommodation and learning skills on a topic that our group had chosen previously. My team spent the week doing Media, which I was happy about as that is something I want to go into in the future! 
I shall now give you a run down of what happened each day!


Luckily, we only had to meet our leaders at 3pm today, meaning I could stay in bed a bit longer! Yay for that! :) When we arrived at our meeting point, we got onto the coach pretty much straight away and headed to our home for the next few days. On arrival, we were informed about timings, safety hazards, the appliances in our flats and everything that we needed to know to survive until Friday.
It was then evening time and time to cook our first meal. The girls in my flat and I decided upon a rota for cooking, making it fair and ensuring not only one person was making all of the meals. We ate spaghetti bolognese on Monday evening and it was rather good!
We then had our evening session with the rest of the group. There was a team talent show, meaning every team had to perform a piece to impress the judges. Talent shows aren't my thing at all, however, nevertheless, I participated in the odd dance that my team decided upon and it was rather fun to watch what everybody else had prepared!
Once our evening session had ended, it was rather late and so we headed back up to our flats. This week was much better than last week due to the fact that we had our own space. Each room had its own shower, meaning there was no waiting until sill o'clock to get ready for bed and I was free to toss and turn as much as I wanted in bed without having to worry about whether I was annoying my roommates or not! Oh, there was also WIFI in the accommodation where we stayed too, which was a MASSIVE BONUS!!

Tuesday wasn't the best day purely because it was based around my least favourite thing in life, public speaking, We were taken to a university lecture room and worked with a lovely man named Jim. He worked with us all day, giving us tips on how to speak in public and I greatly admired his confidence and ability to just stand up in front of a large audience and give a long speech about a random topic on the spot.
We were given a few activities to due over the course of the day. We would be given challenges to write speeches, read them out loud in front of our smaller teams and then some were put forward to be read in front of the other teams too. We wrote many speeches and repeated this process a few times.
I almost cried at the thought of having to speak simply in front of my 13 other team members let alone 4 teams at once, which meant this day was super unproductive for me. It was interesting, however, to listen to other people's speeches and get to learn more about them, but public speaking and I certainly aren't best friends. I simply cannot bring myself to do it! I have a lot of admiration for anybody who can!
After what seemed like a long day, we headed back to our flats and it was my turn to help with the cooking with one of my flatmates. We successfully made macaroni and cheese without poisoning anybody! Are you proud? I'm proud haha!
Later that night we carried out our usual reflections of the day, evening sessions and then went to bed.

Things improved slightly on Wednesday as we began to learn our chosen skill for the week. media. We met our lovely practitioner, named Hayley, and she briefed us on what our task was to be for the next few days. We were going to be planning, filming and editing our own short documentary about a community partner which we were to visit later on that day.
But first, we had to get to grips with the equipment that we were going to be using. This included cameras, tripods and microphones, all of which were very snazzy and of great quality!
Around lunchtime, we got on a bus and set off to meet the organisation which we would be working with. We visited a school named Rathbone, which was where teenagers who perhaps didn't get all of their qualifications in high school or couldn't handle mainstream college attended. The class sizes were small and the school did all of their own fundraising. We spoke to some students and staff members and it was so lovely to hear their stories and just chat to them!
We left the school with clear ideas on what we wanted our documentary to look like and all felt very sleepy on the bus ride home!
Tonight we had chicken and rice for our dinner and it was really yummy!
Once again, we reflected upon the day and everyone felt really inspired by the stories they had heard. It was, however, a long day and I was certainly ready for bed!

We headed back to Rathbone on Thursday and filmed our documentary. We had already filmed some shots of the building the day before so today was mainly about the interviews! We were greeted warmly by the staff and students and it was so cute to see everyone had dressed up smartly as they knew we were going to be filming them. Definitely melted my heart a bit!
We soon set up our equipment and began interviewing. Each interview didn't take long but we ended up with some really good footage!
After finishing filming, we left the college and said goodbye to the wonderful people there. We then headed back on the bus and began to edit!
One of the most exciting parts of this week was definitely that we got to use some pretty awesome equipment! We edited our footage on Macbooks and used the editing software Final Cut Pro X, which I loved! We managed to edit about half of our film, leaving the rest to do tomorrow morning.
As it was our final night on Thursday, we had pizza for dinner, which I definitely wasn't going to complain about!! It was super delicious, as all pizza naturally is. ;)
During tonight's evening session, we did some politics based activities. We discussed important issues in our country today and then were given instructions on what we had to do before leaving on Friday.
We headed back up to our rooms, packed our suitcases and tidied up (not that our flat was messy) meaning we were all set for the morning.
I definitely slept very well that night as I knew I was going home tomorrow!!

We were all up early this morning and prepared our flat for our departure, this included taking our any rubbish and taking off our duvets and sheets. We then climbed onto the coach and headed back to our meeting point, which was only around 40 miniutes away.
When we arrived there we had a few hours to edit the remaining footage we had filmed for our documentary and it was really cool to watch it all come together. Everyone was really happy with the end product and I actually think it looked really professional! :D
At 3pm our families, friends and guardians arrived for a showcase. This was when we would show off what we had been working on during the week and we all had to get up on stage and speak, can you guess where this is going already....?
We rehearsed our team's presentation at 1:30pm and, although I barely had to say a sentence, the thought of speaking on that stage was still eating my insides up.
It all got too much just before the event was about to start and I began panicking in my seat in the audience and had to go outside. I got upset and, despite the staff talking to me, still could not bring myself to stand up and speak.
I was, however, given the option of not speaking and simply standing up on stage with my team, although, I decided that standing on stage in front of maybe 100 people after balling your eyes out and looking like a mess whilst the rest of your team spoke and you just had to stand there like a lemon with everyone questioning "why isn't that girl saying anything?" would be much more embarrassing that not getting up at all, which is what I did.
I remained in my seat and watched everyone else deliver their presentations, which they all did a great job off!
After the showcase ended, we collected our belongings and were free to go home!

This week, despite being much more suited to my personality than last week, still wasn't for me. I especially realised this during the showcase as the room was constantly filled with screams, cheerings and loud personalities who couldn't wait to show off what they had done that week. That isn't me at all. I still felt really left out this week and couldn't wait to come home. I even had a couple of nights when I would cry in my bed, but hey ho its done now!

This week wasn't much better than last week, unfortunately, people wise. Don't get me wrong, the girls who I shared a flat with were very nice and, once again, my team did nothing to offend me, but I still felt extremely excluded and spent the entire week feeling homesick. Everyone has already made their friends and has clearly already decided who they don't want to speak to. Close bonds have been formed between team members, which I am not a part of.

This week was definitely better than the last week, which was down to the fact that I was more in my comfort zone. Media is definitely much more my forte, especially when compared to rock climbing so I found this week easier in that sense, although, I still wouldn't say that I had 'fun.'

Once again, I definitely do not want my experience to put you off signing up for NCS next year! Some of the things I have described may be right up your street!

Thankfully, the third week is my final full week on the programme until September AND I do not stay away from home! I simply meet my team at our meeting point every day from 9:30am until 5:00pm Monday - Thursday. The week consists of us coming up with ideas to help our community and we shall have to pitch our ideas to receive funding, which I am rather nervous about! But let's just see how it goes, eh?!

I hope this post told you a little bit about what it is like to take part in week 2 of NCS! I shall be posting part 3 of these posts next weekend, so keep an eye out for that and follow me on BLOGLOVIN' so you don't miss it!

Comment any questions down below or Tweet them to me! <3

Love, Emily :) xx


  1. Arghh. I'm going today for week 2 and I'm super nervous. I completely understand you about the huge personalities as that is deffo not me and I am already starting to feel homesick - I haven't even left yet!!

    1. Hey Amber! Thank you for reading my blog post! This was just my experience but things could turn around for you this week, you never know! I really struggled during NCS because I quickly realised it wasn't my type of thing, it was too late to back out though and I did want to stick it out until the end. So don't worry, you won't be the only one feeling this way! Week two for me was a little better than week one at least. I hope yours is too. Just keep pushing on and remember it's only one week! It'll all be over soon and you won't have to think about it again. You never know you might make some good friends this week and may enjoy it! Just give it a go. :) Deep breaths and I promise you will be fine! Let me know how it goes! Xxx

  2. Thank you for posting this!! Think I'm a bit late but as someone who has a massive fear of public speaking yet has signed up for ncs I feel a lot better now knowing that you've been through the same things and got through it ��

    1. Hey!! No worries at all, good luck! Honestly it was hell for me, I don't sugarcoat it, so if I can't get through it you definitely can haha! Just remember it's only a few weeks and everyone will be there wanting to support you. It's meant to be fun and isn't designed to cause you suffering or upset. It'll all be worth it in the end, just keep telling yourself that! I hope it goes well! Xx

  3. Hey Hunny! Just read this and I am so conflicted about contiying on so much! Luckily I am fortunate enough that the cost of the three weeks does not put a dent in my parents pockets allowing me to not have to proceed to do the rest of the challenge if i dont wish. The main thing stopping me is the skill which I am doing, Drama :( So conflicted!
    Anyway ive just been looking through your blog and its amazing
    Liv x