What is it?
The award is a four-section programme with three levels:
- Bronze (for those aged 14 and over)
- Silver (for those aged 15 and over)
- Gold (for those aged 16 and over)
The sections involve:
- Service (helping people in the community)
- Skills (covering almost any hobby, skill or interest)
- Physical Recreation (sport, dance and fitness)
- Expeditions (training for, planning and completing a journey on foot or horseback, by boat or cycle)
- Residential Project (Gold Award only) (a purposeful enterprise with people not previously known to the participant)
Award Groups are run by adults, many of whom are volunteers, including youth workers, teachers, employers, trainers, Instructors, Assessors and individuals from the community, all of whom wish to share their skills, enthusiasm and organising abilities to help young people reach their potential.
It would usually take a participant between 6-12 months to complete a Bronze Award; 12-18 months for a Silver Award and 18-24 months for a Gold Award. It may take less time for completion of the Silver or Gold Awards if the participant holds the preceding Award. All Awards must be completed by the participant's 25th birthday.
What's the point?
The award scheme helps develop self-confidence and self-reliance; lets you gain a sense of achievement and a sense of responsibility; discover new skills, interests and talents and develop leadership skills and abilities. You can also discover exciting opportunities; make new friends; experience teamwork, problem-solving and decision-making; increase your motivation; enhance your self-esteem and develop communication skills. You'll also have fun!
How do I get involved?
Speak to a youth worker at your local youth centre. They'll know more, or be able to point you in the right direction.
Where can I find out more information?
Go to the Duke of Edinburgh Award website (external link)