National Citizen Service Trust announced today Mark Gifford has been appointed
as Chief Executive Officer of the country’s flagship youth programme.
Mr Gifford is currently Director for Shop and Trade at Waitrose & Partners and will
lead NCS from the 2nd March 2020. He takes over from outgoing CEO, Michael
Lynas, who is set to become a patron of the Trust.
Mark is responsible for the successful running of all the supermarket’s shops and
leads the 48,000 partners who work in them. His experience in setting strategies
to deliver the Partnership’s mission and goals will be invaluable to NCS as it
moves into its second decade, a new delivery network and as exciting new
partners come on board.
In addition to a strong operational background, Mark also has a passion for the
development of young people. He is the chair of a school he has helped turn from
Requires Improvement to Good in its Ofsted rating. He has also helped other
schools in the same situation.
Brett Wigdortz OBE, NCS Trust, Chairman said: “This is an exciting time for NCS and I’m looking forward to welcoming Mark to our team on behalf of the young people of England and Northern Ireland. Over the last 10 years under Michael’s leadership, NCS has reached almost 600,000 young people with its life-changing programme and over 14 million hours of volunteering have taken place. “As we look to the next decade, embedding our new network of partners and continuing to transform the lives of young people across England and Northern Ireland I’m confident that Mark is the best person to take us forward.”
Mark Gifford said: "What NCS has achieved in its short history is deeply impressive. I am delighted to join and lead the next phase of the journey which will see it embedded as a key national institution. Its mission of inspiring a generation of citizens through a shared experience that develops character and bridges social divides is something I am passionate about. “Making a difference to the lives of young people so they can be the best they can be inspires me and I am excited that my skills in the private sector combined with interests in my private life come together in a truly unique role. Our mission isn’t to leave a better world for our young people, it is to leave better young people for the world.”
Nicky Morgan, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said: "The National Citizen Service has now enrolled more than half a million young people across the country - teaching life skills, improving confidence and boosting their employability. "I welcome Mark Gifford's appointment as the new Chief Executive of the NCS. I am confident that under his leadership, Mark will bring a fresh approach to how we support our young people through the organisation and help have a real, positive impact on their lives." A central part of the recruitment process was the involvement of young people. Alongside the search committee, Youth Advisor to the NCS Trust Board Jermain Jackman worked with four NCS graduates to set a presentation task and pose a series of follow up questions to all shortlisted candidates. The young people were all former NCS National Youth Board members.
NCS is an experience like no other. Designed for 16-17 year olds across England
and Northern Ireland, NCS is a youth programme that runs every summer and
autumn, during school holidays. Teens get the opportunity to mix with a new
crowd, live away from home for a while, take on new challenges and in the
process build lifelong friendships.
The programme is all about emboldening young people – by giving them a taste
of independence and equipping them with essential skills for life. NCSers then
get a chance to take these new-found skills for a test-run in their local
NCS is dedicated to providing a platform to make sure young people are heard
and can engage with their community by completing passion projects, raising
awareness and providing solutions to the issues they care about.
The experience might last just a few weeks, but the impact? That lasts a lot
longer. Since 2009 nearly 600,000 young people have taken part in NCS,
completing over 14.5 million hours of community action, and gaining priceless life
NCS costs no more than £50 - with bursaries and support for those with special
educational needs or disabilities also available. NCS’s mission is to give every
young person the life-changing experience
To find out more visit wearencs.com
About NCS Trust
National Citizen Service Trust is a not-for-profit organisation incorporated by
Royal Charter and established to shape, support, champion and lead a thriving
National Citizen Service.
National Citizen Service Trust is registered in England and Wales with Royal
Charter Body number RC000894. Our registered office is at The Pembroke
Building, Kensington Village, Avonmore Road, London, W14 8DG.