The government has opened the application process for charities, businesses and voluntary groups that want to run its National Citizen Service, a voluntering programme for young people.
At a reception at 10 Downing Street yesterday, Francis Maude, the Minister for the Cabinet Office, said the government would invite organisations to submit their bids to be providers of the scheme over the next few weeks.
He said there would be a competitive tendering process and the government would announce in October which organisations would be delivering the scheme.
Under the National Citizen Service programme, young people will spend six or seven weeks volunteering in the school summer holidays after they take their GCSEs. The volunteering programmes will include residential schemes, local community action projects and a physical challenge event. The government expects 10,000 people to take part in the programmes next summer.
Speaking at the launch of the scheme, Prime Minister David Cameron said: "This is going to happen. As Prime Minister I am also First Lord of the Treasury, so I will make sure there is money for it.
"The good thing about national service was that it got people to work together. The idea behind this is the same. It’s about social mixing and community involvement."