The DofE Resilience Fund
Week on week we hear stories and statistics that illustrate the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on young people across the UK. Young people have missed out on months of learning, are at greater risk of poor mental health and job prospects are looking bleak for young people entering the labour market for the first time.
Many young people faced challenges before coronavirus disrupted our world, challenges of poverty and inequality, which have been exacerbated by the pandemic. The events of the last seven months have served to widen the gap between disadvantaged young people and their peers putting up new barriers that hold them back from realising their potential in life and work.
We, at the DofE, have a unique opportunity to help young people facing disadvantage, when they need us most. DofE is an accessible development tool, with low / no-cost DofE activities that can be done from home or safely in the community. It gives young people structure and goals, helps them build vital skills and attributes, including resilience and confidence, and introduces them to people, causes, subjects and opinions outside their immediate circles. Achieving a DofE Award levels the playing field and offers possibility; the possibility of progressing in education or securing a job interview.
So, today, thanks to donations from some of our incredible supporters, we are launching the DofE Resilience Fund. The fund will help more young people start their DofE and develop the skills and qualities that will help equip them for life and work in the challenging years ahead. The Fund comprises two support packages that DofE Licensed Organisations can access this financial year; funded Participation Places for young people facing disadvantage; and funded online training for adults running DofE in Licensed Organisations.
The year ahead will be critical for young people and I am delighted that DofE can support those young people who have been most severely affected by the pandemic to build the skills, resilience and confidence they will need to navigate the challenges that lie ahead.
Ruth Marvel, CEO