story 5 May 2020

Volunteer Assistant DofE Leader Tom has continued to support participants virtually

Guy hiking with sunglasses and a hat on

As well as doing his own Gold DofE through his Scouting unitTom, age 17, volunteers as an Assistant DofE Leader at St John’s College in Southsea, guiding other young people through their Bronze and Silver programmes. He was doing this in person, but determined not to let the coronavirus lockdown get in the way of his and other participants’ development, he continues to support them virtually.

“I have always loved being outside, and the DofE has been a great way to do this, as well as volunteering, gaining new experiences and staying active. I want to help others do the same and achieve their DofE Award.

“When COVID-19 caused the closure of schools, I knew that we could make it possible for people to carry on with their DofE from home and still get the same level of support. I set up online portals on the school’s remote learning environment, filling them with resources to support them with their DofE and advice on adapting their activities to the current climate.”

Tom also runs virtual drop-in sessions through Microsoft Teams to ensure the young people he helps still have regular opportunities to get extra advice and support. “I want to make sure that the impact of not being in school physically doesn’t affect young people carrying on with their DofE and having fun!”

Commenting on Tom’s support, James McBeath, DofE Manager at St John’s College, says: 

“Tom is a wonderfully enthusiastic and committed DofE participant who has been working hard on his Gold volunteering Section. He has gone above and beyond and demonstrated his superb commitment to the DofE, through development of the digital support platforms and running virtual drop-in sessions to assist others with any questions or advice they may require.”

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