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Fire Cadets blazing the way with the DofE 26/06/2014

The Fire Services Youth Training Association (FSYTA) announced it will run The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE) as part of its National Fire Cadets scheme to further develop its young Cadets. John Cartwright, Chair of the FSYTA, was presented with the licence by DofE Trustee, HRH The Earl of Wessex, during a presentation at St. James’s Palace, London.

The new partnership will enable Fire Cadets aged 13 – 18 to take up the DofE challenge through the National Fire Cadets scheme, giving each the opportunity to meet new people, develop valuable life skills and try a wide range of different activities.

Fire Cadets who start their DofE will volunteer in their communities, learn a skill, get fit and plan and undertake an expedition over six to 18 months of challenging activity. Widely acknowledged as the world’s leading achievement award for young people, the DofE programme encourages the development of key life and employability skills, such as confidence, commitment and team working.

Essex County Fire & Rescue Service started offering the DofE to its Fire Cadets back in 2007 and, to date, 163 young people have achieved etiher a Bronze or Silver Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Speaking about his DofE experience through the Essex Fire Service youth scheme, Jack Blackman, said: “The DofE has been a great experience for me because it has allowed me to try something different and challenge myself. I have really enjoyed my expeditions, as well as all the other sections of DofE that I have completed with the Fire Service. The whole experience has taught me some good life skills”

Dave Sharman, Vice Chair of the Fire Services Youth Training Association, said: “Being able to access The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award through the FSYTA will enable many more young people to benefit from this rewarding and challenging experience whilst engaged in our National Fire Cadet programme.  The FSYTA will be able to help Fire Cadets from all parts of the country to have their skills and experiences recognised through a DofE Award.

The collaboration derives from a natural synergy between the two charities, as both organisations focus on supporting young people in their development for life and work.

Speaking about the partnership, Peter Westgarth, CEO, DofE said: “The Fire Services Youth Training Association’s values closely mirror those of the DofE and we’re excited to have them on board. Our new partnership will give even more young people the opportunity to grow as individuals and become successful, proactive citizens within their communities. Young Fire Cadets will gain valuable skills for life and work through both their DofE and Fire Cadet scheme and have a lot of fun along the way.”

There are currently over 300,000 young people taking part in a DofE programme across the UK through a variety of centres including both state and independent schools, special schools, businesses, prisons, Young Offender Institutions and youth groups.

To find out more about the DofE and how it enables young people to succeed, please visit www.dofe.org