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Twycross House School  >  Duke of Edinburgh

Duke of Edinburgh



Reasons to get involved

Most people who do the DofE do it for the enjoyment, but many universities and employers understand and value the award scheme.  Award holders have proved that they have persistence and commitment; they are focused and can work in a team to overcome difficulties without losing heart.

DofE at Twycross

At Twycross we currently offer all three levels of the Award:  Bronze in Senior 4, Silver in Senior 5 and Gold in the sixth form.

No-one has to do the DofE Award:  it’s completely voluntary.  But most of the people who do decide to get involved find they enjoy it.  You select activities you enjoy from a wide range of choices, and you also decide how long you will do each one for.  First and foremost, it’s supposed to be fun, but many people find that the different sections of the award have other – sometimes unexpected – benefits:

The Skill (hobby or interest) Section

By following an interest or skill you are spending time on something you have chosen yourself.  You are also developing a hinterland:  a range of activities you’re good at and which you can draw on in times of stress and pressure.  This can help make you a more confident, resilient person, better able to cope with exams and other pressures.

The Physical Section

You will also select a physical activity.  Some people choose team games, but many choose other activities such as swimming, yoga, archery, dance or keep fit.  Some people have chosen scuba diving or snowboarding.  Whatever your ambitions, you are probably more likely to achieve them and enjoy life more if you are reasonably fit.

The Volunteering Section

You will be expected to spend some time volunteering.  This service can take many forms.  You might choose conservation work, fund-raising for a charity, or looking after children, animals or elderly people.   Most adults like to put something back into the community which has influenced and supported them.  Volunteering can also be a lot of fun, and in addition you may learn more about how society works and understand people whose life experiences have been very different from yours.

The Expedition Section

Finally, you take part in the expedition.  With a group of friends, you will learn elements of first aid, respecting the countryside, cooking, and navigation.  Then you will plan and carry out a two or three-day expedition, travelling independently through unfamiliar areas and camping overnight. The expedition is demanding, but it’s not really a test of physical endurance:  it is far more about planning ahead to achieve a longer-term goal and learning how to work with other people.

How we can help

Many members of staff give their time generously to make the Award Scheme possible in school.  We can advise you as you set up your individual programme, and check that the choices you have made will meet the Award criteria.  There are a number of opportunities for physical activities and volunteering within school.

Once you have demonstrated your commitment, we provide the expedition training and organise a practice expedition before the final expedition.  Travel, campsite charges, assessor’s expenses and a basic level of insurance cover are included in the price.  If it becomes clear that you need extra practice opportunities, then we’ll arrange these at no extra charge.

You will be expected to provide a tent, a rucksack, warm waterproof clothing, walking boots and your food.  Other equipment, such as maps, compasses and stoves, can be borrowed from school.  There is no charge for this, though you will be asked to provide a returnable deposit.
The real cost is not the money:  it’s the commitment and flexibility you will need to apply to bring your Award to a successful conclusion.  Most people hit a low point at some stage, but when you’ve worked through that it can feel very satisfying indeed.

 

Finding out more

For further information about the activities you could follow, visit the Award’s website:  www.dofe.org.  And to find out more about the DofE at Twycross House, please don’t hesitate to contact Mrs Paul or Mr Holder at school.  We are always happy to talk to you about the Award Scheme.