A record number of young people started their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award in 2023/24 for the third year running – as we continue our work to widen access and remove barriers to participation.

Our annual statistics reveal that 330,984 young people started their DofE, with participants giving a huge 4,725,825 million hours of volunteering in communities all over the UK as part of their programmes – a huge leap of 33% on 2022/23!

More than 545,000 young people are actively doing their DofE, and 30% of 14-year-olds in the UK started their Bronze last year. The number of new Gold Award starts jumped by a huge 16.6%, with Awards achieved also up by 7% to more than 155,000.

The statistics mark the end of the third year of our five-year strategy, which aims to break down barriers and give as many young people as we can the chance to do their DofE.

With the support of our donors, we’re working with more community organisations, schools in deprived areas, Further Education colleges, prisons, and centres supporting young people with special educational needs and disabilities, and offering targeted support to young people and organisations who face financial barriers to taking part.

Thank you to our incredible network of 39,400 volunteers and Leaders who are the driving force behind everything we do and make our work possible! Your commitment, energy and motivation are the reason so many more young people have the life-changing chance to do their DofE.

Our work in action


Since 2021, the DofE has: 

  • Started work to support more schools in England to begin running the DofE, supported by the Department for Education (DfE) and Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).
  • Expanded to more prisons and young offender institutions, in partnership with HM Prison and Probation Service.
  • Started an ambitious project to support more community and voluntary organisations to run the DofE, thanks to funding from Julia and Hans Rausing.
  • With the support of funders, launched targeted funds offering tailored financial support to marginalised young people and the organisations supporting them. 

But there’s more to be done, particularly to give more young people living in poverty the chance to take part. With the support of our donors, in 2024/25 we’ll work to reach more secondary schools, youth justice settings and community organisations, and take more action to support organisations and young people facing financial barriers – including by offering tailored financial support to the young people who need it most.

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