Opinion: Duke of Edinburgh ‘a great challenge’

Chris Garrard and Dom Morgan

Chris Garrard and Dom Morgan

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Getting involved in The Duke of Edinburgh Awards makes us challenge ourselves, build our confidence and do things which we otherwise wouldn’t have experienced.

The activities have made us more rounded people.

We were inspired by Catherine Price, our team leader at Caedmon College Whitby, to take part in The Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

DofE is the world’s leading youth achievement award, giving millions of 14 to 24-year-olds the opportunity to be the very best they can be. It is a fun adventure and major challenge.

We have both achieved our Bronze, Silver and now Gold awards. The main difference between them are the minimum length of time they take to complete, how challenging they are and the minimum age you can start.

We recently completed our Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, which took over a year to complete, and will be going to London later in the year to meet the Duke of Edinburgh, who will present us with our awards.

We each approached the year in different ways. We’ve developed and grown in confidence by doing new things.

Meeting new people is one huge benefit of joining in on DofE awards, which is hugely important for our future and careers.

One new project that we are getting involved with later in the year is helping to set up Boot camps at Dunsley Hall, where we work.

We’ll be making use of our communication, physical fitness and the adventurous approach we have learnt through DofE, and utilising the countryside and beach on our doorstep.

We’d encourage anyone to do a DofE award as it pushes your personal boundaries, you learn new skills and enhances your CV and University or college applications.

If you’re thinking about it, go for it !

Chris and Dom took on a variety of challenges to complete the categories of volunteering, physical, skills, expedition and residential.

Their residential challenge was based near Lyon, France, where he had to learn a range of building skills and meet new people, installing concrete pillars for a car garage.

They found that working in a foreign country you have to be much more resourceful as you can’t always get your point across easily when their is a language barrier. They also crossed the Caledonian Canal in a team of four to look at he contrast between natural and man-made waterways.