The Duke of Edinburgh's Award Programme - Antigua & Barbuda

The Award is a challenging programme of activities open to young people between the ages of 14 to 25. The Programme aims to develop those qualities of maturity and responsibility which will help them throughout their lives, in their homes,in their jobs, and in their relationships, whatever their personal abilities or circumstances.

Young people who participate can learn new skills, help others and experience adventure. It is recognised by employers, universities, the Armed Services and many others as an outstanding development programme because Award holders are keen to take on new challenges, have a higher level of self confidence than their counterparts, and have leadership qualities with the added experience of teamwork.

There are three levels: Bronze, Silver and Gold, and at each level there are activities in four sections - Service, Expeditions, Skills and Physical Recreation. At Gold level there is also a Recreational Project.

The information below is a brief outline of what is the Award Programme entails.

BRONZE LEVEL

Participants must be at least 14 years old to start the Bronze award and can expect it to take a minimum of six months to complete.

To complete the Bronze Award, participants must complete a Service, Skill, Physical Recreation and plan & prepare Adventurous Journey for a 2 day venture.

Based on an average of 1 hour per week, a participants must actively take part in a service, skill and physical recreation for 3 months. These can of course run alongside each other and do not have to run concurrently.

The minimum age for completing the Bronze award is 14 and a half years. On completion, participants will be presented with their award by the National Director as well as a badge to wear on the uniforms.

SILVER AWARD

Participants must be at least 15 years old to start the Silver award and can expect it to take a minimum of six months to complete.

To complete the Silver Award, participants must complete a service over 6 months, a skill and physical recreation for a total of nine months (participants can choose to do either for 6 months and the other for 3 months) and plan & prepare for a 3 day venture, while Direct Entrants must undertake an additional 6 months in either the service or the longer of the skills or physical recreation.

The minimum age for completing the Silver award is 15 and a half years. On completion, participants will be presented with their award by the National Director as well as a badge to wear on their uniforms.

GOLD AWARD

The Gold Award is the highest level in the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme. Participants must be at least 16 years old to start the award and can expect it to take a minimum of one year to complete.

To complete the Gold award, participants must complete a service over 12 months, a skill and physical recreation for a total of eighteen months (participants can choose to do either for 12 months and the other for 6 months) and plan & prepare for a 4 day venture, while Direct Entrants must undertake an additional 6 months in either the service or the longer of the skills or physical recreation.

In addition, Gold participants must also complete the residential element of the award. This involves undertaking a shared activity in a residential setting away from home for 5 days and 4 nights, with people who are not already known to them.

To help participants complete this section, the annual summer camps are the ideal opportunity, as many camps take two or more squadrons. This means that the participant will be working with people they have never come across before.

There are other avenues available if the participant or his/her award leader can arrange it. Other possibilities include youth hostels or sailing ships.

The minimum age for completing the Gold award is 17 years. The participant will also be presented with a Gold Award by the National Director as well as a badge to wear on their uniforms.