Leading youth charity The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE) has won the prestigious Education and Training trophy in The Charity Awards 2012 in recognition of its work with young employees.
The DofE was chosen for its outstanding training initiative for young employees and trainees, DofE Business. The Charity Awards, sponsored by The Times, is the sector’s most prestigious excellence recognition scheme. Winners were announced at a presentation dinner held at the Grosvenor House Hotel last night (14 June).
The DofE works with a wide range of UK businesses allowing their employees, trainees, graduates and apprentices to benefit from a life-changing Gold DofE Award programme. In return, businesses support the Charity’s growth through donations that enable many more young people from all backgrounds to do their DofE in the wider community.
The Charity Awards is a key moment in the charity calendar. All winning charities this year have been judged by an independent panel of sector leaders as having demonstrated outstanding best practice from which other organisations can learn.
Peter Westgarth, the DofE’s Chief Executive, said:
"We are delighted to have won this award. We are very proud of our work with businesses in the UK, giving apprentices and young recruits the chance to do their Duke of Edinburgh's Award through their employer, while enabling us to widen our reach in the UK.
"This is a huge honour for our Charity, at a time when young people need all the help they can get to realise their potential and develop essential skills for life and work."
Mel Ewell, Chief Executive of Amey which puts all its apprentices through DofE Business as part of their training, congratulated the Charity on its success,
“Amey has had a successful working relationship with The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for more than a decade and we are glad their endeavours have been recognised in this prestigious award. Amey is proud to be working with The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award to help young people fulfil not only their professional potential but also their personal potential.”
Companies that run DofE Business have found it speeds up young people’s development, makes them better at their jobs, and develops the skills, attitudes and attributes that employers are crying out for in their workforce: commitment, communication skills, leadership and teamwork.
The DofE partners with a wide range of employers, giving them the chance to offer the DofE to their young workforce. This year alone, 99 young apprentices and employees from British Gas, Tesco’s, Amey and Lloyds Banking Group received their Gold DofE Awards at special presentation events with HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.
More than 280,000 young people from every community are doing their DofE every year, regardless of background or circumstance. We want to double the number of young people doing their DofE by 2016, and treble the number taking part that come from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Employers including Vinci, Peter Jones (part of the John Lewis Partnership), Robert McAlpine and Scotrail support the DofE and run DofE Business. Scotrail’s initiative scooped the Best Business Newcomer title at the Scottish Modern Apprenticeship Awards 2011. Many more companies are now seeking to offer the DofE in their training programmes, while also recognising DofE Award holders as future employees.
With the number of young jobless at a record high, and unemployment among Britain’s graduates at its highest level for 17 years, the DofE welcomes the development of more employment and training opportunities for young people.
The DofE is calling on British business to recognise the DofE Award, partner with the Charity and support young people as they develop skills for life and work at this critical time. Any companies wanting to know more about how they can support a generation of future talent or DofE Business can find more information at www.DofE.org/supportus
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