More than 150 young people were invited to receive Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Award certificates last night (18 September) – marking another successful year for the award on the Island.
The annual awards evening at the Gaiety Theatre was sponsored by Ardwhallan Outdoor Education Centre. Paul Riding, North of England Regional Officer, presented the certificates.
To gain a Bronze award, young people aged 14 and over complete at least three months on each of three sections – volunteering, physical and skills – opting for six months on one of them.
They also plan, train for and complete a two-day expedition.
The Silver award, open to those aged 15 and over, involves a minimum of six months volunteering and six months on either physical or skills sections, with three months on the other. They also tackle a three-day expedition.
The Department of Education, Sport and Culture’s Youth Service is an operating authority for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and has 13 groups – known as Award Units - that are registered to run the awards.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is offered at all five secondary schools as well as a number of voluntary youth organisations. Some participants choose to work towards their awards independent of an Award Unit but are welcomed to join a unit to complete sections such as volunteering and expedition.
Last night’s presentation also saw a number of long-time volunteers receive special certificates to mark their achievement.
Alison Barnes, Awards Coordinator with the Department of Education, Sport and Culture, said:
‘This is one of my favourite events of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award year. It represents the end of the journey through a particular award and a celebration of the personal achievements of each individual who comes forward to receive their award.’
Young people who go on to attain the Gold award are presented with this at a special event held later in the year.