The Duke of Edinburgh's Award Expeditions 2018–19

Over a number of years, St. Mary’s has provided opportunities for students to obtain The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels. Through the scheme, students develop skills and confidence recognised by employers, colleges and universities - the awards are also great fun.

  • At the Bronze award level we saw a record take-up this year. 60 Year 9 students took part. Our two day Qualifying Expedition was based around Herd Farm centre at Eccup reservoir.

  • Our Silver Duke of Edinburgh Practice Expedition consisted of 24 Year 10 students that have taken part in the three-day expedition, walking from Bolton Bridge back to Menston. The Silver Qualifying Expedition took place at the beginning of June.

  • The Gold Duke of Edinburgh Practice Expedition takes place over four days in the Yorkshire Dales in the last but one week of the summer term. 9 participants are taking part this year.

This year also saw a record number of completions. All four sections of the award at Bronze and Silver levels and five sections at Gold level need to be completed before a certificate and badge can be issued. This year saw 26 Bronze completions, 4 Silver and 6 Gold. The Gold Award participants receive an invitation to Buckingham Palace to receive their award if they so wish.

Libby Woffenden receives the Diana Award at the UK Parliament

Libby took part in the St. Mary’s 2018 Year 12 visit to South Africa.

On Monday 1 July 2019, Libby received her Diana Award on behalf of The Bambisanani Partnership from Wayne Bulpitt CBE. Warmest congratulations to Libby for this achievement.

Established in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales, The Diana Award is the most prestigious accolade a young person aged 9-25 years can receive for their social action or humanitarian work. It is the longest running award for young people that is given to individuals and groups through a retrospective nomination process only. The Diana Award believe this is special because young people do not work towards the award, rather they demonstrate their suitability through their actions, without any expectation of reward.

The day ended with an opportunity of a lifetime. A private tour of the House of Lords by Angela Harris, Baroness Harris of Richmond. An opportunity to sit in the second Chamber of the United Kingdom Parliament and listen to a debate – seeing democracy in action! Thank you to the Baroness and thank you to Mr Harvey for arranging the tour opportunity.

“When both teaching and sitting in on St. Mary’s student taught lessons at Mynakanya, it was incredible to see the enthusiasm of each student for every subject. In my geography lesson, even though the students had very little exposure to the subject, they all got involved at every opportunity. For example, some students asked me to write down what we had said to ensure they wouldn’t forget it, and others took pictures of notes and maps on the board. I found this determination and dedication to learning very inspiring.”
— Libby Woffenden, speaking about the St. Mary's 2018 visit to South Africa
“Collecting the Diana Award on behalf of the 2018 Bambisanani Visit was an incredible opportunity which I will cherish for a long time. Learning about the work of the current and past award holders that I spoke to was both extremely inspiring and motivating. The opportunity to participate in the morning workshop taught me skills which I will carry forward into future interviews and public speaking that I do.

The awards ceremony, in The House of Lords, was a great way to bring the experience together as we all gathered to receive our awards and listen to inspirational guest speakers, such as Amika George, who was named as one of the most influential teenagers in the world in 2018. Finishing the day with a private tour of the House of Lords from Baroness Harris of Richmond was an amazing experience and I am so grateful for the opportunity.

My Bambisanani experience from start to finish has taught me lessons I will take with me and cherish throughout my life.”
— Libby Woffenden, speaking about the special day