1 What is DofE?
The Duke of Edinburgh's Award (DofE) is the world’s leading youth achievement awards programme for young people; it was founded in 1956 by Prince Philip.
Taking part in the DofE is a fantastic opportunity to develop and learn new skills - it's also fun and exciting and looks great on your CV! Get involved, learn new skills, go on an adventure and show your potential.
There are three awards levels:
- Bronze - for those aged school year 9 and older
- Silver - for those aged school year 10 and older
- Gold - for those aged 16+ years.
All three levels have to be started by the time you are 23 and a half and you have until you are 25 to complete your DofE.
You need to undertake the activities for a minimum of one hour a week over a set period of time, so they can be fitted in around your school and free time. You need to make sure you complete your award by your 25th birthday.
What you do in your programme is entirely up to you, but you need to complete all four sections (five, if you are doing Gold) to gain the award.
The sections are:
- Volunteering - Choose to volunteer for any group or charity
- Physical - Choose any physical activity you enjoy that keeps you fit
- Skills - Choose something you enjoy, then develop it and put it to good use
- Expedition - Go out and have an adventure with your team (your DofE centre will normally make arrangements for you to carry out your expedition)
- Residential (Gold award only) - Go away for a minimum of five days with your team and take part in a range of activities to develop your teamwork and communication skills.
The great thing about the Duke of Edinburgh Award is you are in charge of what you do. You choose the activities and, provided they fit in with the requirements of each level, you have the chance to develop your skills, help in your community and take part in new experiences.
2 DofE Award centres
In West Sussex we support over 65 Duke of Edinburgh's Award centres.
If you are interested in taking part, ask at your school or college, or find out more on the Duke of Edinburgh's Award website.
If you have any general enquiries about taking part within West Sussex, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For all other enquiries, please refer to the DofE list of contacts below.
If you want to carry out your Duke of Edinburgh’s award at your local school, youth centre or open centre, refer to the list of award centres below and send them an enquiry.
3 Open and virtual centres
One of the guiding principles of taking part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award is that it should be achievable by all and personalised.
Young people involved in the award can do so at an open centre or through the virtual centre.
Open centres in West Sussex operate in Chichester, Haywards Heath and Horsham and offer Bronze, Silver and Gold levels of the Award.
You can contact leaders at each of the locations using the details below.
The West Sussex virtual centre is offered to young people aged between 14-24 who are unable to undertake the award within their school or an open centre.
You can carry out the award with the help of parents/carers, on your own or with your support workers.
4 Funding and support
We have funding and bursaries available for young people, leaders and groups.
Funding for young people
- DofE funding application form for a young person (Word, 395KB)
- DofE funding for young people - Guidance (PDF, 99KB)
Funding to support young people’s involvement and group development
- Free participation places for disadvantaged young people application form (Word, 73KB)
- Free participation places for disadvantaged young people guidance notes (PDF, 152KB)
Funding for leaders
Some of your costs associated with being a DofE leader may be eligible for subsidy.
If you need help with any of these applications email: email@example.com.
Other funding and bursaries may also be available; for more information visit the DofE South East Region website.
As part of the expedition section of the award, your centre will normally make the arrangements. However, if you want to arrange the expedition yourself, refer to the list of Approved Activity Providers (AAP).
If you have any questions please speak to your centre leader.
eDofE is an online operating system that enables young people taking part in the Duke of Edinburgh's Award scheme to record their intended aims, track their progress and upload evidence of their achievements.
For further advice please visit the DofE YouTube channel, which also offers assistance if you are experiencing difficulties trying to sign in.
6 Find out more
Important information for parents/carers of young people participating in their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.
7 DofE jargon buster
There’s a lot of jargon that’s used in your Duke of Edinburgh Award (DofE). The glossary below should help explain all the terms used.Duke of Edinburgh’s glossary (external link)
If you're thinking of doing something that isn’t on our list, please have a chat with your DofE leader.
8 Information for centres
West Sussex Duke of Edinburgh partnership support officers are available for support centre development and delivery of the award.
Our current training calendar and information pack for centre volunteers are available below.