To connect with your community and give service to others and their communities.
Perhaps the most personal of all The Duke of Ed Sections, Service is all about giving back to the community you are part of, or giving to others and their communities. Whatever passions young people may have, whether it’s care and concern for the environment, a love of animals, a desire to make a difference to the lives of those less fortunate than themselves or a wish to help the sick or elderly, the Service Section offers the structure to fulfill these passions.
Service offers a young person the opportunity to engage with society and gain an understanding of the importance of their role within both their immediate and global community. It gives Participants the chance to connect with individuals and groups they may have previously overlooked or not been aware of, and to make a real difference to their wider community.
By getting involved with their community, Participants should enjoy making a real difference to the lives of others, and through this, develop a greater responsibility to themselves and wider society. It is hoped that through regular commitment to their chosen service,
Participants will begin to form a lifelong habit of community involvement and voluntary service. Some of the benefits you may want to discuss with your Participants include:
- It’s personal and it’s rewarding: You choose where you want to volunteer your time. You will get out of it what you put in.
- You will make a real difference: Whether you choose to volunteer to help people, or whether your passion is focused on nature, fundraising or another area of society, your contribution will make a real difference to the area where you volunteer your time.
- You might surprise yourself: Sometimes it’s easier to think you won’t be able to do something, rather than actually trying to do it. By putting yourself in situations that are out of your usual comfort zones, you will be surprised what you may learn about yourself.
- You can do it with your friends, and you might make some new ones along the way: Whether you choose to volunteer with your friends, or whether you choose an area on your own, you will meet some inspirational people from a range of backgrounds.
- You will feel great: By devoting your time to helping others or by pursuing a cause you will feel a real sense of achievement and personal satisfaction.
- You will learn new interpersonal skills: Service sometimes puts you in challenging situations with people from a variety of backgrounds. This type of experience helps to develop patience, tolerance and compassion, and an increasing awareness of the problems and needs of others and society.
For this Section, Participants must:
- Undertake an activity regularly where they are donating their time to a genuine cause for the required length of time depending on the Award level chosen.
- Meet the minimum time requirements depending on the Award level chosen.
- Show regular commitment, progress and improvement in their chosen volunteer activity.
- Understand that regular commitment means at least one (1) hour per week, two (2) hours per fortnight or four (4) hours every four weeks.
- Undertake activities substantially in their own time. This means that whilst some activity may take place within school, university or work hours, most of it should occur outside of these scheduled times
For some activities, formal or informal training may be required. This will need to be checked with the organisation the Participant has selected to volunteer with. Any required training may be used towards the Participant’s Service minimum time requirements. Please note that any Service activity must not be to benefit the Participant’s family. It must also meet a genuine need, and not just provide a favour to a friend or neighbour or based on a required vocational or work experience activity.
Like all Sections of The Duke of Ed, choosing what or who to volunteer for is a personal choice. Each Participant should choose a Service activity that interests them. This could be something entirely new, or something they may already be involved in. Some Participants may feel comfortable ‘doing it alone’ and choosing something no one in their peer group is doing. Others may want to choose an activity that they can do with their friends, with the group dynamic offering the inspiration and motivation needed to get through.
The important thing is for Participants to choose something they are interested in, to challenge themselves, and to undertake an activity that makes a real contribution to their community. All Service activities must be unpaid.
• Aged care
• Ambulance service
• Animal care
• Bush regeneration
• Care for animals
• Child care
• Coaching sports teams
• Conservation project/groups
• Disability awareness
• Emergency services volunteer
• First aid
• Helping people with special needs
• Hospital volunteer
• Junior school council
• Library assistance
• Litter collection
• Meals on wheels
• National trust
• Park rangers
• Peer support
• Run a lunchtime group
• Senior Citizens’ club
• Service clubs
• Student newsletter
• Sunday school teaching
• Surf life saving
• Tree planting
• Water biodiversity
• Youth leader
For more information on this Award Section please download and refer to The Duke of Ed: Handbook