Duke of Edinburgh's Award
The Duke of Edinburgh programme is all about developing your passions, learning new skills and challenging yourself. It offers girls an opportunity to try something different with friends, have fun and discover new interests and talents.
There are four sections to complete at Bronze and Silver level and five at Gold. They involve volunteering in the local community, becoming physically fitter, developing new skills, training for and completing an expedition and, at Gold level only, working with a team on a residential activity.
This level is available to all girls from the Spring term of the IIIs and will take around 6 months to complete. Each section (volunteering, physical and skill) is carried out for 3 months. Most of the year group will work on the same volunteering project which has varied from walking Snowdon to creating a business with £10. The girls will then attend co-curricular activities to fulfil the physical and skill section on the award. They will also complete a practice and a qualifying expedition over 2 weekends, involving two days of walking and one night camping, in the Spring/Summer term.
This level is available to all girls from the Spring term of the IVs and will take at least 6 months to complete. Two sections (volunteering and either physical or skill) will be carried out for 6 months and the other for 3 months. The girls are encouraged to be more independent with their volunteering activity, with many helping to run activities, taking part in the Sports Leadership Award, supporting younger years in their boarding houses or raising money for charities. They will also complete a practice and a qualifying expedition in the Spring/Summer term, involving three days of walking and two nights camping.
This level is available to all girls from the Spring term of LVI and will take at least 12 months to complete. Two sections (volunteering and either physical or skill) will be carried out over 12 months and the other for 6 months. All of the girls in LVI are encouraged to volunteer for one afternoon a week, and this is what the DofE girls will use for their volunteering activity. This can range from learning how to be a lifeguard to working in schools and care homes in the local community. The expedition section is carried out over five days and four nights in the Spring term which includes a preparation day at the starting point.
The big difference at Gold is that the girls will also do a residential section which involves staying away from home or school for five days and four nights doing a shared activity with people that they do not know.
Ideas and opportunities for each section can be found here.