Devon’s young people honoured at Duke of Edinburgh Awards

Posted on: 14 April 2016

Young people from around Devon are celebrating after being presented with their Gold Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) Awards.

Recipients from schools, uniformed organisations and voluntary centres across the county took part in a special ceremony hosted by Devon County Council (DCC) to mark the scheme’s 60th anniversary.

The 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. The DofE is recognised in 111 countries across the globe.

They came from DofE centres from all over Devon including Honiton, Tiverton, Okehampton, Exeter, Wembury, Tavistock, Crediton, Ivybridge and Colyton.

They packed out the Council Chamber on Saturday 2 April for the presentation ceremony to receive their Gold awards – and each and every one of them had a story to tell about the challenges and achievements along the way.

Peter Singleton, SW Regional Director for the DofE and Helen Jenny, Chair for DofE Devon also attended and spoke about the value of DofE not only on an individual level to those taking part but also of its value to the communities of Devon.

Also present were staff and pupils from Marland School and ISCA Academy who are currently working towards their Bronze and Silver Awards. They came to demonstrate to all of those present that the Award can be for everyone and that it can make a huge difference to young lives.

To be awarded a their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, the young people undertook sections in: volunteering, learning a new skill, a physical activity and expeditions in teams. Those undertaking their Gold Award also had to do a weeks residential.

The awards are split into three categories, Bronze for those aged 14, Silver for 15 year-olds and Gold for those aged 16 and over.

DofE Devon is part of the Devon Youth Service and civic dignitaries including DCC leader Councillor John Hart, DCC chairman Councillor Christine Channon, DCC cabinet member for Performance and Engagement Councillor Barry Parsons attended.

The awards were presented by the Vice Lord-Lieutenant, Sir John Cave, with the recipients presented by DCC chief executive Phil Norrey who was acting as Master of Ceremonies for the event.

Young people were honoured for a range of achievements including volunteering for a summer camp for disadvantaged children in Bulgaria, dry stone walling and taking part in conservation management research programmes.

Long-service awards were presented to three volunteer DofE leaders, Brian Cherrett from Honiton Independents, Chris Bourne from Okehampton Open Award Group and Anna Crabbe from Five Alive DofE group in Kilmington.

County Council chairman Councillor  Christine Channon said: “Today the DofE is Cllr Christine Channonwidely recognised as having a long-term positive impact on young people’s prospects as they develop vital skills for both life and work including confidence, commitment, team working and a real sense of community involvement.

“I congratulate each and every one of our award holders in Devon on their personal and team achievements but would also like to congratulate the fantastic network of support that has been developed in this area to help them along the way.”

County Council leader Councillor John Hart said: “Gaining a Duke of Edinburgh’s Councillor John HartAward is an achievement in itself but it does not only equip people with the skills and experiences they gained along the way it also offers tangible evidence of what they have done and what they can they can offer to employers, colleges and universities.”

Posted in: Community | Education | Health and Wellbeing