A Royal date with the golden touch for local young people

The Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award winners from Dumfries and Galloway at Holyrood Palace last week
The Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award winners from Dumfries and Galloway at Holyrood Palace last week

Just over 700 hundred young achievers from across the UK had a date in the prestigious setting of The Palace of Holyroodhouse last week including 19 young people from Dumfries and Galloway.

The recipients attended Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE) centres in Dumfries, Thornhill, Newton Stewart and Annan where they achieved their Gold Awards, supported by leaders and volunteers coordinated through Dumfries and Galloway Council. The group travelled to Edinburgh to receive their certificates from the DofE’s Patron and Founder – HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.

The Gold Award Presentation (GAP) is a celebration and recognition of the young people’s achievements in completing their Gold DofE programmes. The GAP is a unique event and a fitting culmination to mark the hard work, determination and perseverance required.

The young people worked tirelessly through the five sections of their DofE programmes over anything from 12 months to 5 years to achieve their Gold Awards. The diverse activities carried out by the young people included youth leadership, teaching English as a foreign language, volunteering with the Scout Association, National Youth Choir of Scotland, cycling, walking, learning to drive and undertaking residential activities with the Ocean Youth Trust Scotland to name a few.

Council leader, Ivor Hyslop, said, “Throughout their Duke of Edinburgh’s award, these young people have proved themselves to be great team members, leaders, decision makers and to be compassionate and dedicated. They have shown the impact of DofE, and that it can develop the skills needed for life.”

The recipients are now off pursuing their university careers and finding jobs in this tough economic climate, where they find being Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Holders a great advantage.

If you wish to get involved with the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award there are many opportunities. As a volunteer, whether your skills may lie in hill walking, needlepoint or running a voluntary group then there are lots of options for getting involved with the DofE. With over 900 young people working towards their Award in Dumfries and Galloway this year, all help is welcomed.

You can find out more from Gary Kirkpatrick, regional DofE support worker at the Oasis Youth Centre, Dumfries. Tel: 01387 273885 facebook: www.facebook.com/dofedumgal