Posted on March 27, 2017
On Friday 10 March, five Year 10 students received their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Awards certificates and badges. The bronze award is the first level of the program and involves a 3-6 month commitment plus four days of an adventurous journey.
The Duke of Edinburgh program is an internationally recognised award that invites young people aged 14-25 to realise their ambitions and to change their world.
Young people challenge themselves by choosing activities that spark their interest in the three sections of the award – service, physical and skill. They set their own goals and work towards achieving them over the given time period.
Ashlea Cross chose to learn how to clip/hand shear sheep for her skill and used this skill when participating at the Bendigo, Geelong and Royal Melbourne Shows. For her service, she was a buddy coach for an Under 11 and Under 13 netball team and for her physical activity she undertook gym and personal training programs to improve her strength and fitness, as well as playing netball at an elite competitive level. For her Adventurous Journey component, she chose an exploration activity and spent four days at the Australian Wool and Sheep Show with the Tintern Young Farmers. During these four days, she was active in preparing and showing sheep, as well as participating in the junior judging and helping other breeders with the presentation of their animals.
Erin Doupe chose cooking as her skill and used the 13 weeks to learn how to cook a range of nutritious meals for her family. For her physical activity, she worked towards her Australian Level 8 Gymnastics accreditation and combined her love of gymnastics with her service activity, which was to help coach a junior class of Prep aged students. Erin has subsequently secured a junior coaching position with her gymnastics club, Eclipse, and her voluntary contribution was commented upon favorably by the head coach when she was considered for selection. Erin completed a hike in the Grampians to the Fortress and Mt Thackeray in the July holidays last year as her Adventurous Journey.
Emily Bizley commenced dance lessons as a way of improving her overall fitness, as she does not participate in sport outside of school. She also undertook cooking as her skill. Both Emily and Erin participated in a Tintern Duke of Ed Master Chef session as their assessment for this component of the award, along with three other girls. Each student had to prepare their favourite savoury or sweet dish, which was then presented to the Maintenance Department for afternoon tea. For her community service, Emily attended the Greenways Garden Nursing home and helped some of the elderly residents with Bingo and using computers. She helped one particular gentleman, who would wait for her to arrive in the front entrance. He talks about how helpful Emily was and now misses her visits. Emily took part in the sea kayaking summer expedition to the Gippsland Lakes for her adventurous journey.
Emily Evans chose walking and jogging over long distances to increase fitness and stamina for her physical activity. For her skill, she commenced guitar lessons and progressed from being a beginner to taking part in the Girls’ Intermediate Guitar Ensemble attending weekly rehearsals. Emily also undertook her community service at an aged care home where her goal was to make a meaningful and positive impact on the elderly by valuing and caring for them during her visits. For her adventurous journey, she took part in the sea kayaking summer expedition.
Mitch Wooller volunteered at his local Epilepsy Foundation Op Shop where he learnt retail skills and met some amazing people. For his physical activity, Mitch played both rep. and domestic basketball with the aim of improving both his game and confidence. Like Erin, Mitch combined his sporting love with his community service and chose to coach his younger brother’s basketball team. They reached the grand final losing narrowly by three points. Mitch’s Adventurous journey was mountain bike riding through Mt Buller and Mt Stirling as part of the Year 9 Summer Expedition program.
Currently there are over 70 students in Year 9 to 12 enrolled in the Duke of Edinburgh program at all three levels of the award. The Duke of Ed journey for each of these students is a personal one and only the students themselves know how much they have challenged themselves and just what they have achieved throughout the course of their award. We congratulate these senior students on their wonderful achievements.
By Anne Bortolussi, Secondary Music Teacher and Co-ordinator Duke of Edinburgh Awards Program