Students from Derwen College have been invited to Buckingham Palace to collect their Gold Duke of Edinburgh Awards on 24th May.
Five current students and two former learners have received formal invitations to the palace from HRH Princess Eugenie of York, HRH The Earl of Wessex and HRH The Countess of Wessex. They will be swapping camping gear for smart suits and dresses for the formal presentation in the gardens at Buckingham Palace.
This month, Duke of Edinburgh Students at Derwen College doing their Gold Award were also given a fantastic boost from members of the three Masonic Lodges in Oswestry.
Fitz Alan Lodge, St. Oswald Lodge and Cae Glas Lodge each made a donation of £450 to the college, and their donations have been match funded by the Shropshire Masonic Charitable Fund, making a grand total of £1800.
The money will be used to fund the students to go on three expeditions, which are part of the Gold Award challenges. One of the expeditions will involve the students navigating their way through the Snowdonia Mountains, using a map and a route card. The students will be walking for about 10k each day before setting up camp and preparing their tea on camping stoves.
The Gold Award students also have to complete tasks at a residential activity centre on the shores of Lake Coniston in the Lake District. The group will be working alongside another Special Needs school and will be responsible for daily tasks – bed making, preparing meals, cleaning and tidying, as well as taking part in group activities such as canoeing, rock climbing, and abseiling.
Derwen College has a very popular and successful Duke of Edinburgh programme with 52 students currently working towards their Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards.
Steve Evans, Sports Coordinator at Derwen College said: “We are very proud of the Duke of Edinburgh programme we run at Derwen College, but the level of commitment needed from the students, their parents and college staff is immense. It means that raising funds to pay for the equipment, away days and transport can be difficult, so we really do appreciate the support of groups such as the Masonic Lodges for their wonderful generosity, year on year.”
Picture (L- R): Steve Evans, Duke of Edinburgh Coordinator at Derwen College; Adam Richards; Pete Adams, Secretary of Cae Glas Lodge; Andy Clarke, Charity Steward Cae Glas Lodge; Wally James W.M. Cae Glas Lodge; Sarah Blows; Rachel Pickford and Josh Mallen.