Duke of Edinburgh

The Duke of Edinburgh Award is non-competitive and open to all young people – it's about setting personal challenges and pushing personal boundaries. 

In order to complete the award, all students are required to complete 3 individual sections - Volunteering, Skill, and Physical, and one group section in the form of an expedition.

It is a powerful way for every young person to build belief in themselves and discover just how much they are capable of, whatever their background, interests and abilities. The programme will require a high level of self-management and commitment from your child throughout the school year – particularly so for the expedition section, which includes a training course and at least two weekends away during the summer term.

Through their DofE, students will make friends and memories, follow their passions, learn new skills and make a difference in our community. They will build traits like confidence, resilience and self-esteem, which can benefit mental health, and 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/university or future jobs. 

We always say that after taking on DofE, you know that whatever life throws at you, you’re ready to deal with it.

Bronze Award - Year 9+

The Bronze award is an excellent starting point for students who would like to ease into the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and progress through the award at a steady pace. The timescales are very manageable at Bronze and the training and expeditions are suitable for all students, regardless of previous hiking and camping experience. Completing the Bronze award will allow the students to start their Silver training earlier, have shorter timescales for Silver, and be more confident in their Silver expedition. 

The Bronze DofE award requirements are that students complete one of their sections for 6 months and the other two sections for 3 months. For Bronze, their practice and assessed expeditions will be 2 nights hiking and 1 night camping in rural countryside that is familiar or local to the students. The expedition will be supervised by a combination of internal Ricards Lodge staff and our Approved Activity Provider, Ben Bullen Adventures Ltd. 

Silver / Direct Silver Award - Year 10+

In year 10, students have the opportunity to complete their Silver award. Silver expeditions are a step above Bronze. Participants may already have had an introduction at Bronze level, but will now carry out a three-day/two night expedition. The Silver expeditions will improve independence, resilience, communication, teamwork, and leadership skills, but most importantly, it will be fun and will give you lifelong memories with a team of friends exploring the great outdoors.

The Silver DofE award requirements are that students complete a minimum of 6 months for the volunteering section, 6 months for another section (physical/skill) and 3 months for the other section (physical/skill). For Silver, their practice and assessed expeditions will be 3 nights hiking and 2 nights camping in rural, open countryside or forest that is unfamiliar to the students. Our Silver Expedition will be fully supervised by our Approved Activity Provider, Ben Bullen Adventures Ltd, with students travelling independently to and from the starting point. 

This is 1 further day and night compared to what they would have completed at Bronze. For those that have not completed Bronze, previous hiking and camping experience is necessary as it can be a demanding challenge completing the 3-day hike carrying their rucksacks as well as camping away from home for 2 nights. In addition, if they have not completed Bronze, they will need to complete a further 6 months in one of the sections, totalling 12 months, 6 months and 3 months. 

Enrolment takes place in the summer term for the following academic year. If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to ask Miss Crowley or email dofecoordinator@ricardslodge.org