DUKE OF EDINBURGH’S AWARD

At Oaklands Catholic School the Duke of Edinburgh Award is run by a group of volunteers; this includes myself Mrs Judith Hoar as Manager. Now retired, I am a former teacher at the school and currently a Governor. I am fortunate to have a team of dedicated people who assist in running the scheme particularly the expedition section. They include some teaching staff, support staff and parents. All of us have undertaken appropriate D of E training including Safeguarding and have the necessary DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service) checks in place.

The Award is a voluntary programme which can be undertaken at three levels, Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards. It is designed to be a personal challenge for the participants and each participant’s programme is ‘tailor made’ to reflect their individual interests and abilities. The Award is divided into four sections at Bronze and Silver level and five at Gold level. Participants select and set aims/goals in each of the following areas:

Volunteering: undertaking service to individuals or the community.
Physical: improving in an area of sport, dance or fitness activities.
Skills: developing practical and social skills and personal interests.

(Two of the above sections are undertaken for a minimum of three months and one must be undertaken for six months. Activities must be undertaken regularly i.e once a week, once a fortnight for the equivalent of an hour a week)

Expedition: planning, training for and completion of an adventurous journey

Students will be assisted in planning what to do for the volunteering, physical and skills sections of their Award but will be expected to use their own initiative and time to complete these. The training for the expedition section will be undertaken by qualified staff on specific dates, attendance is compulsory in order to complete the expedition and the Award.

Due to the current restrictions and uncertainty about when group meetings will be allowed it is not possible at this stage to give any precise details as to when expedition training will take place except to say that it will be on Saturdays (usually 4 half days spread over Autumn and Spring Terms but depending on when we are allowed to start this could be a combination of half and full days).

In addition some training will take place on a Wednesday after school (15.45-1700) to include use of eDofE (the on line system used by participants to record their progress), route planning and writing of route cards for expeditions, collecting and returning equipment etc.

All being well the two expeditions will take place as follows:
Training Expedition – Sat/Sun May 2021 – South Downs
Assessed Expedition – Sat/Sun June 2021– South Downs

Equipment
Students will need to provide their own personal equipment for the expedition section including walking boots, wet weather gear (jacket & trousers), sleeping bag and mat and personal clothing.
Maps, Compasses, Tents, Cooking Stoves/Gas and Rucksacks (limited number) can be hired by payment of a deposit (£5.00 per person for maps/compasses, £15.00 per person per tent, £10 per person per Trangia/Gas and £10 for a Rucksack). Deposits will be refunded if the equipment is returned in a clean and satisfactory condition, complete and on time.

Cost
In addition to those costs outlined above there is a one-off enrolment fee of £38.00 to cover the cost of the D of E licence, photocopying (including an Expedition Handbook), registration on eDofE and a book to record progress as well as the costs of the two expeditions (approximately £25.00 per expedition to include campsite fees, fuel, trainers and assessors expenses but not food or hire of equipment).

The completion of the Award requires a considerable commitment from the participant as well as from parents/carers but the benefits are considerable. As soon as the situation becomes clearer and the ‘green light’ is given for D of E activities to recommence then I will be able to give a date for when I am able to meet with those who are interested in applying and to give precise dates for Expedition Training including the two expeditions.

In the interim please consider carefully the information above and also go to the D of E website (www.DofE.org) where you will find more information e.g what activities are acceptable for each of the three sections – Volunteering, Physical and Skills. If having read this information and consulted the website you have any unanswered questions I can be contacted via email j.hoar@oaklandscatholicschool.org

 

To download the Bronze ‘Help Memo please click here