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School's Duke of Edinburgh Award success 27 April 2010

It has been another successful year for Duke of Edinburgh's Award participants at Queen Elizabeth II High School in Peel.

Sixty four students entered the Scheme and 54 of them gained awards - a result described as 'excellent' by the school.

The school's awards unit is run entirely by volunteer staff and over the past six years 308 students have gained awards. Duke of Edinburgh students

Students have to complete four sections to gain a DofE Award. For the volunteering section participants are encouraged to give time to help others. The young people this time logged up more than 1,550 hours of community service.

Activities included raising money for charity, working in charity shops, helping to coach sports, assisting with voluntary youth groups, riding for the disabled and helping the elderly.

Students are required to learn skills by taking up a hobby. The skills were many and varied and included bell ringing, dog handling, fly fishing, farming, photography, driving, drama, horse care, gardening and music.

The physical recreation section has also to be undertaken with a range of sports that included carriage driving, horse riding, yoga, kayaking, badminton, self-defence, archery and swimming.

For the final section of the award, students have to complete an expedition. Most participants make their expedition on foot but this year 23 students decided to travel by kayak.

Fourteen students gained gold awards after undertaking expeditions off Island, with groups travelling to Cumbria, Snowdonia, West Greenland and Vancouver Island.

Gold Award participants also have to complete a residential project and these were carried out in Romania, Costa Rica, Sweden, Vancouver Island and Greenland.

One student on completion of her gold expedition wrote ‘how proud all this makes me feel, looking back I realise how much I have accomplished, fears I have overcome, found personal strengths I never knew I had. I have proved to myself what I can do. I can do anything if I put my mind to it'.

Students and staff would like to thank all the many volunteers in the community who have helped with the Award by providing opportunities to participate in sport, youth activities and charity work.

Gold Awards - Emily Biggart, Alex Bowers, Ben Crookall, Charlie Griffiths, Rachel Hall, Rowan Robinson, Jack Scarlett, Jack Sleight, Sarah Walker, Nicholas Watt.

Silver Awards – Josh Smith, Polly Rogerson, Suzanne Thomas, Hollie Devlin, Rebecca Fong, Clare Fisher, Eleanor Jones, Sarah Walker, kaya Teare, Rosie Hesketh, David Watt.

Bronze Awards – Nicole McKnight,Josh Smith, Robbie Daniels, Hannah Brockhouse, Rebecca Beavis, Alyssa Whittam, Daniel Gibson, Olivia Newstead, Sarah Thursfield, Kirsty Pierce, Tom Skillicorn, Sarah Walker, Karen Reid, Beth Vickers, Alice Henderson, Matthew Middleton, Lucas Croydon, Rebecca Wilson, Sarah Moore, Alice Willoughby, Kim Tastagh, Aaron Leece, Tom Davenport, Jason Crease, Gemma Gell, Megan Gell, Joseph Crookall, Charley Taylor, Eloise White.

Lesley Sleight, who runs the awards programme, said: 'We do not have any budget to buy equipment for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme and rely on donations or fundraising. If anyone has any redundant rucksacks, light weight tents or kayaks that they no longer require we would really welcome them. If anybody can help with any equipment, even Isle of Man maps, it will be of great help.'

If you can donate any items please contact Lesley on 841000.

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