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23 May 2016

Canford celebrates Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award at Buckingham Palace

On 16th May 2016, Ben Vessey, Headmaster of Canford School in Wimborne, Dorset, attended a unique Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE) Gold Award Presentation at Buckingham Palace, London.  At the event Mr Vessey was presented with a special plaque from the DofE Charity by celebrity Holly Walsh acknowledging Canford’s commitment to running the DofE and thanking it for giving young people the opportunity to transform their lives.  

The DofE is celebrating its Diamond Anniversary throughout 2016, having supported millions of young people in the UK and across the globe to achieve DofE Awards since it was founded in 1956. The prestigious Gold Award Presentation at Buckingham Palace is one of many memorable events taking place to celebrate 60 years of the Charity.

Members of the Royal Family; HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, HRH The Earl of Wessex and HRH The Countess of Wessex, congratulated those that were present including young Gold Award achievers, organisations that deliver the DofE and special guests such as corporate supporters and DofE Diamond Challengers, who have set themselves a personal challenge to raise money for the DofE Charity in its anniversary year.

Canford holds a licence to deliver Gold DofE programmes and believes that the experience of working towards this award impacts significantly on young people’s futures, enabling them to develop vital skills for life and work, such as confidence, commitment, resilience and team work. Widely acknowledged as the world’s leading achievement award for young people

Speaking about Canford’s involvement with the DofE, Ben Vessey said: “I feel honoured to have been invited to Buckingham Palace to receive a commemorative plaque to acknowledge and say thank you for our work with the Charity during its Diamond Anniversary year.  Our pupils are encouraged to push themselves outside of their comfort zones through our extensive co-curricular programme and the skills that they develop enhance their academic studies and are often life-changing.”

Peter Westgarth, Chief Executive of the DofE Charity said: “Through the DofE, Canford is inspiring the success of its young people; equipping them with the attributes and skills to get a job and build strong relationships whilst opening up their worlds and introducing them to a broad range of interests. We are truly grateful and our Diamond Anniversary is a fantastic opportunity to say thank you.”  

Currently, there are over 300,000 young people doing a DofE programme across the UK through a variety of centres including both state and independent schools, special schools, businesses, prisons, young offender institutions, housing associations and youth groups.

To celebrate its 60th year, the Charity has launched the DofE Diamond Challenge. This one-off initiative allows people of all ages to take on a DofE inspired challenge and earn their Diamond Pin. Signing up to The DofE Diamond Challenge has an amazing double benefit – whilst challenging yourself, pushing your boundaries, you’re also raising money for the DofE Charity so that it can transform the lives of more young people and offer free places and bursary grants to those most in need.  

Visit www.DofE.org for more information about the DofE, and to find out how you can support the Charity in its Diamond Anniversary year, go to www.DofEDiamondChallenge.org.

Photo attached: Ben Vessey receiving the Canford DofE Licensed Organisation plaque from presenter Holly Walsh (credit – Tempest Photography)

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