A bumper number of winners

A total of 43 pupils and former pupils achieved the Gold Award this academic year, up from 20 in 2016 and 18 in 2015.
A total of 43 pupils and former pupils achieved the Gold Award this academic year, up from 20 in 2016 and 18 in 2015.

A total of 30 young people from across Aberdeenshire visited Holyrood recently to meet Trustee for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, HRH The Earl of Wessex, and collect their Gold Awards for participation in the award programme.

A total of 43 pupils and former pupils achieved the Gold Award this academic year, up from 20 in 2016 and 18 in 2015.

This included Fiona Morven McLachlan from Peterhead Academy.

At all levels, 400 young people have achieved Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards across Aberdeenshire during this school year.

Some 255 Bronze, 102 Silver and 43 Gold awards have been achieved across the 18 Duke of Edinburgh centres in Aberdeenshire.

During the Gold Award Presentation on July 5, HRH took the opportunity to congratulate the group on their successes and heard about their DofE journeys.

Gold award participants in particular demonstrate outstanding commitment to the programme by participating in 12 months of volunteering, completing 6-12 months of learning a skill and doing physical activity, and going on a four-day expedition as well as a five-day residential.

Gillian Owen, chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee said: “Congratulations to all of those young people who’ve taken part in this year’s award scheme.

“It is great to see so many achieving at the highest level and as well as being a huge achievement for the participants, this is also a great accolade for the council employees and volunteers who support the programme locally.

“We are very proud of the team effort across Aberdeenshire.”

Vice-chair Mark Findlater added: “It is wonderful to see how much all of those who take part gain from their experiences.

“None of this would be possible without the staff and volunteers there to support pupils and we’re very grateful to everyone who has given up their free time.”

The council is always looking for new volunteers to support the programme so please get in touch if you would like any more information.

You should email awards@aberdeenshire.gov.uk or alternatively you can visit the team’s Facebook page which can be found at www.facebook.com/Duke-of- Edinburgh-Aberdeenshire