The DofE is non-competitive and open to all young people – it’s about setting personal challenges and pushing personal boundaries.
Through their DofE, students will make friends and memories and build traits like confidence, resilience and self-esteem, which can benefit mental health. They’ll gain skills and attributes for work and life, like problem-solving, team-working and self-motivation – and they’ll achieve an Award that’s recognised by top employers and can help them stand out when applying for college or jobs.
Every young person’s DofE programme is personal to them – they can choose what they’d like to do for their Skills, Volunteering and Physical sections, and most activities can count. We will provide guidance and support, and students can either choose to continue an activity they already do or discover something completely new.
Activities for each section take a minimum of one hour a week over a set period of time, so they can fit around studying, hobbies and social lives. The academy enrichment programme provides a wide range of activities that can be used for DofE.
Volunteering is all about making a difference to others’ lives. Maybe you’re interested in animals or conservation? Or you want to raise money for a cause that means a lot to you?
From coaching a local football team to starting a recycling campaign, you’ll give up your time to help others and change things for the better.
It’s extremely rewarding — and it can give you the chance to experience the world of work.
The Physical section is a chance for you to focus on your health and fitness and have fun along the way.
Try something completely different or concentrate on something you already do, as long as it requires a continuous level of energy and physical activity.
From Zumba to football, skateboarding to walking — almost any dance, sport or fitness activity can count.
You can decide to join a team or do it on your own — it’s up to you.
From podcasting to playing an instrument, the Skills section lets you learn a new talent, develop existing skills and find something you enjoy doing.
By developing practical skills and gaining personal interests and talents, you can get a real sense of achievement.
If you’re interested in a specific field, this could be the perfect chance for you to do something related to this. For example, if you’re interested in photography, you could do this as your skill.
You can grow your confidence and develop practical and social skills while learning how to rise to a challenge.
The Expedition section involves students working as part of a small team to plan their expedition’s aim, choose a location and do some training to make sure they’re fully prepared – before spending 2 days and 1 night in the countryside.
Ahead of this, they will take part in training sessions throughout the year covering basic expedition principles and introducing them to expedition equipment.
There will also be a number of training sessions in which groups will plan their route and prepare. Participants will only be able to do their expedition if they attend the organised training.
Your child can still have the full DofE experience, safely and in line with Government guidance, during the COVID-19 outbreak. The motivation and focus the DofE gives, and its positive impact on mental and physical health, can play an important role in helping your child navigate our ‘new normal’, safely expanding their world and giving them skills and experiences to open doors in the future.
As participants can choose and change their activities, they can pick ones that they can do while social distancing or from home. The DofE has provided useful advice and information, including activity and volunteering ideas, at DofE.org/DofEWithADifference.
The DofE has also introduced a number of flexibilities to allow expeditions to take place safely, in line with social distancing restrictions and Government guidance. While your child’s expedition may look slightly different to those in previous years, they will be able to do theirs safely and with all the benefits and memories they’d get at any other time.
Participants can create their DofE programme and record their progress using eDofE, the DofE’s digital system, available online at eDofE.org and through the DofE app – downloadable for free from Google Play and the App Store.
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