Extending our reach – 2018
We’ve continued to extend our reach, working towards our strategic objectives of getting more participants to start and complete their DofE Awards and reaching more young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Our research tells us that the DofE has a disproportionately positive impact on young people from a disadvantaged background. Our online systems allow us to measure and record this activity more accurately than ever before. Our aim has been to ensure that at least 20% of those starting their DofE are from a defined disadvantaged group.
Our year-on-year progress adjusted now that we have more accurate information, shows that a total of 62,998 disadvantaged young people were supported, accounting for 22.8% of our activity last year. This is hugely rewarding and we will be reviewing our targets in this area as we begin to invest our Diamond fund (see below), enabling even more disadvantaged young people to access the benefits of taking part in the DofE.
This demonstrates a wonderful improvement in the quality of support provided by our nationwide, diverse and highly committed network of around 40,000 volunteers, professionals and DofE staff.
We were very pleased to be able to announce in September 2017 a new £3 million investment to support more young people accessing and doing their DofE. Currently almost 50,000 disadvantaged young people start their DofE each year, our ambition is to increase this to 70,000 each year by 2021.
We have already received some great ideas for helping more disadvantaged young people including a SEN school that is looking to open a ‘Diamond’ café where their students can volunteer to serve customers and help in the running of the day to day activities and a school, whose students have complex physical and emotional needs, who would like to repair their allotment and create a sensory garden.