The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (commonly abbreviated DofE), is a programme of activities that can be undertaken by anyone aged 14 to 24, regardless of personal ability.
DofE programmes can on average take anywhere between 1 year and 3–4 years to complete, depending upon the route taken – all programmes must be completed by the participant’s 25th birthday. Around 275,000 participants are taking part in their DofE Programme at any time in the United Kingdom.
The concept of the DofE is simple – anyone aged between 14 and 24 can do a programme at one of three progressive levels which, when successfully completed, lead to a Bronze, Silver or Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.
There are four sections at Bronze and Silver level and five at Gold.
With assistance from adult Leaders, participants select and set objectives 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.
Expedition: planning, training for and completion of an adventurous journey in the UK or abroad.
At Gold level, participants must do an additional fifth Residential section, which involves staying and working away from home doing a shared activity.
Each section must be done for a minimum period of time. It must be monitored and then assessed by someone with knowledge of that particular activity to achieve an Award. Each progressive level demands more time and commitment from participants.
The popularity of the DofE continues to grow. Participation in DofE programmes and the number of Awards achieved has grown every year since 1956. Today over 275,000 young people take part in DofE programmes in groups which are run in over 11,000 DofE centres throughout the UK.
Here at St. Joseph’s, our Co-ordinator of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is Mr Davies. If you are interested in participating or would like to find out more information, please ask to see him.