Duke of Edinburgh Award
A DofE programme is a real adventure from beginning to end. It does not matter who you are or where you're from. You just need to be aged between 14 and 24 and realise there's more to life than sitting on a sofa watching life pass you by.
You can do programmes at three levels, Bronze, Silver or Gold, which lead to a Duke of Edinburgh's Award.
You achieve an Award by completing a personal programme of activities in four sections (five if you're going for Gold).
You will find yourself helping people or the community, getting fitter, developing skills, going on an expedition and taking part in a residential activity (Gold only).
However, here is the best bit - you get to choose what you do!
Your programme can be full of activities and projects that get you buzzing. In addition, along the way you will pick up experiences, friends and talents that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
A Bronze DofE programme has 4 sections, Volunteering, Physical, Skills and Expedition. You need be in fourth year to start a Bronze programme and you must do a minimum of 3 months activity for each of the Volunteering, Physical and Skills sections, and plan, train for and do a 2 day (1 night) Expedition. You also have to spend an extra three months on one of the Volunteering, Physical or Skills sections.
The next step up from Bronze... you need to be in fifth year to start doing your Silver DofE programme. You need to do at least 6 months Volunteering and a minimum of 6 months on either Physical or Skills and 3 months on the other. It is up to you which one you do for longer. The Expedition section involves planning, training for and doing a 3 day (2 night) expedition.
Once you are in sixth year you can do your Gold DofE programme. You will spend 12 months on your Volunteering section. For Physical and Skills you must spend 12 months on one and six months on the other - you decide which way round you do it. The big difference at Gold, is you'll also do a Residential section - staying away from home for five days and four nights doing a shared activity with people you don't know. The Expedition section involves planning, training for and doing a 4 day (3 night) expedition.