The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is an international programme aimed at young people aged 14 – 25. There are three levels, Bronze, Silver and Gold, with participation becoming progressively more challenging at each stage. The award at Belvidere has gone from strength to strength and is continuing to grow with many students involved in the current KS4 cohort. It provides exciting and rewarding opportunities for our students from Years 10 and 11. The key benefits of the award are the life skills that it helps students to develop through participation in a scheme that is widely recognised by both employers and universities.Each level of the award has four sections and these are briefly outlined below.Skills section –
This provides an opportunity for students to develop a new skill or enhance an existing one. In the past students have learnt how to sew, look after animals, cook four course meals, umpire sports matches and play musical instruments.Volunteering section –
Our students really enjoy this section and relish the opportunity to help others in their local community. Belvidere students regularly volunteer to help in local charity shops, at after school and sports clubs for younger children, with elderly people and at the St. John’s Ambulance Service acquiring first aid skills.Physical Recreation section –
This involves learning a new sport or developing an existing sporting interest over a prescribed period of time. Students have taken part in a range of sports including swimming, cricket, cycling and canoeing. Completing this section, whilst being fun, also has the added benefit of improving students’ fitness along the way.Expedition section –
This is the part that is most commonly associated with the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme and our students really rise to the challenge. For each level students must plan and carry out a practice and then an assessed expedition. The expeditions provide a real opportunity for students to be self-sufficient, working as a team in challenging environments. We regularly carry out expeditions in the Shropshire Hills and Berwyn Mountains. The school is exceptionally lucky to have a stock of equipment to lend to students to support them with their expeditions and minimise the costs involved.
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