Terms of Programme

AGE ELIGIBILITY POLICY

Our standard age eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • Autumn – Participants must be 16 or 17 on 31 August of the current calendar year (and must not be 18 during any part of a residential phase, including travel days);
  • Summer – Participants must be 16 or 17 on 31 August of the current calendar year. Note that this means that young people who are 15 may attend summer programmes, providing they turn 16 on or before 31 August that year.

INCLUSION POLICIES FOR YOUNG PEOPLE WITH SUPPORT NEEDS

Where possible we provide equal access to our programme for all young people and will make the necessary adjustments to enable a young person to access and get the most out of NCS. Inclusion is about bringing people together. We recognise and celebrate people’s differences whilst ensuring that we provide equal opportunities regardless of these.

The only reason that we would not accept a young person onto the programme would be if we could not guarantee their or other people’s safety.

We are able to accommodate a large range of support needs if we are fully informed of them in appropriate time before the programme starts. Please complete the medical and support form as soon as possible, providing us with full details of the young person’s needs. Our dedicated team may then contact you if they need any further information or to discuss any additional support we could provide. One-to-one support is available on certain programmes (please contact us for information about availability in your area). In some cases, we may require a doctor or other specialist’s input to ensure that the young person is able to participate safely.

If you would like to discuss the possibilities for support on our programme, please call us on 020 3510 5050. To start your young person’s application, and provide details of their support needs, please go to our online portal for applications: http://ncsthechallenge.org/register

COSTS AND FINANCIAL SUPPORT POLICY (BURSARY)

The NCS programme costs a maximum of £50 per Young Person although discount deadlines are available which may reduce this to £35, these are linked to school events.

For applicants unable to commit to this expenditure financial support is available. To apply for financial support please contact 020 3510 7672 or speak to the School’s Coordinator for your school.

 

NCS REFUND POLICY

We operate the following refund policy in accordance with the terms set out below.

PAYMENTS FOR NCS

There are various ways you can apply and pay your NCS administration fee.

THE CHALLENGE

We accept payment by credit/debit card, cheque or postal order and by cash (if the cash is handed in to the young person’s school and you notify us that we need to collect this).

Card payments can be submitted online or over the telephone, whilst cheques and postal orders can be posted to us.

NCS TRUST

Our funder, the NCS Trust may take your initial application over phone or through their website along with a card payment (ncsyes.co.uk).

REFUND ELIGIBILITY

If a young person withdraws from NCS with The Challenge within 14 days of our receipt of their payment, they will be eligible for a full refund of their payment.

In the rare circumstance that we are not able to offer a young person a place on the programme on any of their selected dates, we will also offer a full refund. This does not apply to young people who give up their confirmed place after 14 days of payment to go on the waiting list or if they move their application to the next available programme.

If a young person has been offered a place on their selected dates and contacts us within 14 days of being assigned, to reject the place, they will be eligible for a refund. Please note that we cannot change the programme dates without permission from the parent or guardian.

If the young person has paid the NCS admin fee and does not complete stage 4: your detailsand stage 5: review and submit sections of the application, they will be eligible for a refund.

MOVING TO THE NEXT SEASON

If you have paid the NCS admin fee and decide not to go on NCS for the season you have applied for, or if the young person has not been offered a place, you will have the opportunity to use your administration fee for an alternative NCS season. At the end of the season, we will contact all NCS applicants who were not offered a place and ask if they would like to move their application to the next season. This is subject to age eligibility. If they decide to not move their application to the next season, then they will receive a full refund.

DISCRETIONARY REFUND

In a very small number of circumstances we may offer a discretionary refund if a young person cannot attend NCS due to an unforeseen or exceptional reason. This can only be offered if it has been approved by a Manager.

HOW WE PROCESS REFUNDS

As standard, refunds will be made by bank transfer.

  • If you have paid by card, we will refund your payment back to the card you paid with. However, if your card has expired, we will contact you to collect up-to-date bank details.
  • If you have paid by cash or cheque, we will contact you to arrange a bank transfer to your bank account. We will not be able to process the refund until we have these details. If you are unable to accept a refund by bank transfer, we will provide a refund by cheque.

TIMELINES

Refunds by bank transfer will be paid within 10 working days of receiving the request. Refunds by cheque will be processed within 14 working days of receiving the request, depending on post, this may take longer to arrive. If you have not received your refund within 3 weeks of requesting your refund, please contact us via our contact page.

ELIGIBILITY OF PARTICIPANTS (YOUNG PEOPLE) – NATIONALITY

NCS Powered by The Challenge is open to all Young People at school or living in our specified geographic areas who meet the age criteria. EU Citizens are eligible if being educated in England whether in independent or mainstream schools, Non-EU Citizens are eligible if they hold Indefinite Leave to Remain status (and would therefore normally be eligible for access to public funds), or have Discretionary or Time Limited Leave to Remain (and hence some level of access to public funds in some circumstances) or have Refugee status (with recourse to public funds) or are awaiting their status to be determined (i.e. in receipt of NASS payments).

All Young People eligible according to the other criteria can only take part in the NCS programme once.

SAFEGUARDING OF YOUNG PEOPLE AND VULNERABLE INDIVIDUALS

We take the health and safety of young people in all manner very seriously and have a stringent Safeguarding policy to ensure that young people are in a healthy environment at all times. As we are continually seeking to improve and keep up with industry best practise our policy is updated regularly. If you require a copy of the policy please download The Challenge 2018 safeguarding policy document.

 

HEALTH AND SAFETY ON THE PROGRAMME

During the programme Health & Safety is of utmost importance and our staff and activity provider staff are required to conduct regular risk assessments and our requirement in obtaining full medical and support information from a parent/guardian is to enable us to produce accurate assessments and ultimately reduce risk.

2018 ABSENCE POLICY

You are eligible to graduate from NCS if you complete 100% of the programme. If you are unable to attend due to an authorised reason (listed below) you may be eligible to graduate when you make up the hours that you missed through volunteering. Please note you cannot miss the first day of your NCS programme. Only exceptional circumstances will be authorised on a case-by-case basis.

TO COMPLETE THE 18 DAY SUMMER PROGRAMME

  • You can miss up to 4.5 days through authorised absence, but will be encouraged to make up 100% of hours missed to graduate.
  • You can miss up to 4.5 days through unauthorised absence, and must make up the hours to be able to graduate.
  • You cannot miss 4.5 days in only one phase of the programme. Only exceptional circumstances will be authorised on a case-by-case basis.

TO COMPLETE THE 14 DAY SUMMER PROGRAMME

  • You can miss up to 3.5 days through authorised absence, but will be encouraged to complete 100% of hours missed in order to graduate.
  • You can miss up to 3.5 days for an unauthorised absence, but must make up all hours missed to graduate.
  • You cannot miss 3.5 days in only one phase of the programme. Only exceptional circumstances will be authorised on a case-by-case basis.

TO COMPLETE THE 11 DAY AUTUMN PROGRAMME

  • You can have up to 2.5 days authorised and still be able to graduate. You will be encouraged to make up the hours missed to 100% of attendance.
  • You can have up to 2.5 days unauthorised absence but must make up the hours to be able to graduate.
  • You cannot miss 2.5 days in only one phase of the programme. Only exceptional circumstances will be authorised on a case-by-case basis.

Places on NCS

Places are subject to availability and are not confirmed until you receive confirmation from us by either email or letter. If we are not able to offer a young person a place on the programme, we will issue a full refund of the administration fee.

Waiting lists only apply to programmes which are already full.

Young people on a waiting list will be offered any space which becomes available on the programme before it starts. As other young people’s availability changes – due to holidays or other commitments – spaces do become available for those on waiting lists.

Waiting lists are checked daily and in general spaces are allocated to those that completed their applications first.  We are however also obliged to consider other criteria when allocating a place on the programme:

  • accommodation restrictions for boys and girls places
  • the number of people already on the programme from any one school (as we have to mix young people from different schools)
  • if the date selected has a suitable place to meet the young person’s needs (see our inclusion policy for further details).

If you are placed on a waiting list we will contact you.

You might also want to consider whether you are available for any of our programmes on other dates, as this will increase your chances of securing a space. It is possible to be on waiting lists for multiple programmes to increase your chances of getting a space.