Duke of Edinburgh
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme has been offered at Wollondilly Anglican College for the past 13 years. The Award is an international program that invites young people between the ages of 14 to 25 years to participate in activities involving service, physical recreation, skill and adventurous journeys. For Gold level participants there is an additional element of a residential program.
Today more than 140 countries have adopted The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award program with over eight million young people having participated worldwide. Locally over 700,000 young people have completed the Award in Australia in the past 58 years, with on average 40,000 very diverse participants annually working towards achieving an Award.
Through this challenging journey of self-discovery, participants:
- Are equipped and empowered to achieve their personal best;
- Learn to take responsibility for their goals and choices;
- Become connected to and actively engaged within their immediate community;
- Make a real difference to society through their positive contributions and involvement;
- Learn to persevere and overcome barriers to success;
- Learn important life skills; and
- Increase their career opportunities.
The program builds character in addressing all the dot points above. As well as this, the opportunities for students to undertake journeys in national parks and wilderness areas provides them with experiences to have some time out from our busy and noisy modern world and to enjoy God’s creation. Connecting with the natural environment allows them time and space to reflect on who they are and God’s purpose for them.
Below is listed a small sample of what the students think about the program and why they
- The hikes provide us with an opportunity to escape from our rushed and busy lives with a fantastic challenge and an amazing sense of achievement.
- We get to go to places we wouldn’t normally go.
- It creates a sense of independence from our parents. We have to rely on ourselves to carry our food and camping gear as well as cook for ourselves.
- We get to socialise with people that we don’t normally mix with at the College.
- There is a challenge in doing it and even though it is hard we realise that we can do it.
- I’ve learnt that you can push through tough challenges particularly when people encourage one another.
- You learn a lot about yourself and what you can do.
- It made me realise that you need mental toughness as well as physical toughness.