The Gold award is offered to year 12 and 13 but there are now 5 sections to the award.
The five sections to the award are:
- 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
- Residential: To achieve your Gold Award, you need to complete an extra section – the Residential. This involves spending 5 days and 4 nights away from home on a shared activity with people you’ve never met before.
The gold award is more prestigious and involves a large amount of the students’ time. If they have not completed silver, they will need to undertake the sections for 18, 12 and 6 months and the volunteering will need to be for at least 12 months. If they have not undertaken bronze or silver, they also undertake an Emergency First Aid at Work course in school as well as an extra expedition held around Easter.
All students are taught the necessary skills for the expedition at lunchtimes within school and the expeditions are held on the last weekend in the summer term and then in the middle of September. The practice expedition is in the Dark Peak area of the Peak District with the assessed taking place in the Yorkshire Dales. They will get the opportunity to climb all of the 3 peaks but have to undertake a project while on their expedition as well.
We also provide the students with a walk up onto Kinder Scout at the end of January so they can appreciate the harsher weather conditions in the winter and the fitness levels needed for the expeditions later in the year.
The Gold Award is a well recognised qualification that is well regarded by universities and employers alike but students who undertake this must appreciate the time and effort needed to gain the full award. Students who do complete are then invited to an Award Ceremony at Buckingham Palace. More information on either award is available from the website https://www.dofe.org
For more information, contact Mr Stapley via e-mail: NStapley@ecclesbourne.derbyshire.sch.uk