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The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
What is the DofE?
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award – most often also referred to as DofE – is the world’s leading youth achievement award with more than 400,000 young people currently completing the programme in the UK.
Students who have taken the award describe the DofE as a life-changing experience, an opportunity to explore new interests and talents, an essential tool to develop skills for life, and a recognized mark of achievement respected by employers and universities. Although every student’s DofE journey is slightly different, there are a few common traits that all participants share: the DofE is about setting personal challenges and pushing your own boundaries to develop well-rounded skills. Click here to find out what the UK’s biggest companies think of the award and participants: dofe.org/lifezone/employersbelieve/.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is not about competition or coming first in a contest, it is about participants’ own development and growth. Therefore, it can be taken by anyone aged between 14 and 24 years old regardless of abilities, gender, location or background. While it may not be called the DofE in students’ home countries, most of them have their own or the equivalent of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. To see if your country participates in the award, check the link here intaward.org/near-you.
Different DofE stages and activities
The DofE can be completed in at three different levels: Bronze, Silver, and Gold. These are broken down into volunteering (individual or community service), physical (improving in an area of sport or dance), skills (practical and social skills), expedition (completing an adventurous journey in the UK or abroad), and residential (staying away from home – at the Gold level only). What participants do at each stage is decided and agreed on together with their DofE Leaders. As one of the guiding principles behind the DofE is “personalised”, it also means that no two students’ journeys will be identical.
How will Bucksmore help you?
At Bucksmore Education, we are approved to run the Residential component of the Gold Award. In this section, you will undertake a shared activity in a residential setting away from home for at least 5 days and 4 nights. Just like the other sections, the Residential section has four key stages: preparation, training, activity, and assessment. We will help you throughout your entire Bucksmore DofE journey, we will be available for help and support at all times, and will write and upload your report at the end of your programme.
What are the benefits of a residential DofE?
There are numerous benefits of completing the Residential section of the DofE including but not limited to:
- developing confidence in an unfamiliar environment,
- collaborating with other team members to achieve a shared goal,
- building and fostering new relationships,
- improving communication skills along with various coping mechanisms,
- showing initiative and leadership skills,
- developing respect and understanding for others,
- working on skills and attitudes to live and work with others.
Some of the skills above will improve on their own, while other qualities will require some dedication to develop. The idea behind the residential section is to take students outside their normal environment and comfort zone. Students gain new skills as they enjoy new experiences and encounter new people from different parts of the world. Working together, students will have shared objectives and will develop social and team-working skills.
If you have already started your DofE Award in your home country, or would be interested in completing your DofE with Bucksmore Education, please do get in touch with us via firstname.lastname@example.org or +44 (0) 208 312 8060.