Rising singing star Leo Stannard gave a surprise performance at Walton Girls’ School in Grantham this week.
Leo, a fast emerging singer-songwriter, dropped in on a group of 130 students to support the National Citizen Service youth programme.
The Leicester-born singer, signed to Black Butter/Sony Records, who has toured with stars such as Nina Nesbitt and Rudimental, visited the school as part of a special one-off performance where he showcased his guitar playing skills to the Year 11, 12 and 13 students. He spoke of the highs and lows of his journey to stardom and the importance of perseverance and resilience in order to realise your potential - skills that can be developed on the NCS programme.
Leo said: “I’ve had such a warm welcome from Walton Girls’ High School and it was great to be able to take time out of touring to perform for these amazing young people and offer a little advice. I know how hard it can be to keep on track and get to where you want to be, especially in such a competitive industry. That’s why it’s so vital to keep pushing yourself and build up your confidence and resilience through programmes like NCS – it’s those skills that will help you get ahead in whatever career you choose.”
This visit marks Leo’s first appearance as an ambassador for NCS, a four week youth empowerment programme taking place across Lincolnshire this summer. On the part-residential programme, 15-17 year olds meet other young people from different backgrounds, challenge themselves with a range of outward bound activities and take part in skills-based training and workshops. In the final week, teams create a social action project supporting a local cause, which they deliver over 30 hours.
The visit coincided with the school’s end of year celebrations ahead of the exam period. The school is just one of hundreds of schools across the country which currently support NCS. To date, the programme has seen more than 200,000 young people expand their horizons, make new friends from a range of backgrounds and contribute to their local community.
Caroline Saxelby, Principal at Walton Girls’ High School, said: “We’re so glad Leo was able to join us today as part of our Year 11’s leaving celebrations. The students are beginning their study leave and Leo’s performance has not only been an amazing send-off but a reminder that there are so many exciting opportunities like NCS to look forward to after exams.”
Phil Everett, from EM1, the regional NCS provider, says: “We’re thrilled Leo decided to visit Grantham in his first appearance as an ambassador for NCS. His enthusiasm for the programme is just what we need to remind parents and teens of the fantastic opportunities out there and the difference a few weeks away can be on a young person’s development. There’s still places left for the summer programme and it’s just £50 or less to take part – our graduates will tell you that there’s no better way to spend the summer!”
NCS takes place across England and Northern Ireland this summer and is open to all 15-17 year olds. For more information visit www.ncsem1.org.uk.