The programme was introduced by Mgr. Tomáš Vokáč., Ph.D., Executive Director of DofE Czech Republic. He concluded his short presentation by explaining that he believes the DofE Award is “an excellent, all-round programme of informal education that leads young people to experiences that form their values and will be often useful to them in their personal and professional lives.”
The DofE Award and its benefits for life were described also by Tim Voase, Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy to the Czech Republic, patron of the DofE Award and holder of the Gold DofE Award. He believes the DofE Award is mainly about gaining self-confidence and increasing your chances of getting a good job. “Without the DofE Award, I would not have gotten such a great job. Thanks to the Award, I had something special, which helped me beat the competition.” However, it is not just about an internationally accepted certificate, but about the self-confidence and the belief that you can fulfil your dreams. “Self-confidence is the most important thing the DofE Award gave me,” Tim Voase concluded.
Lukáš Kotlár (19), participant in the Gold Award, holder of the Bronze and Silver Awards, Editor-in-Chief of the Zámeček magazine, shared his experiences and stories from actively participating in the DofE Award. “It is important to have motivation in life. That is why I decided to join the DofE Award. Thanks to the Award, I had the opportunity to meet a member of the British Royal Family, The Countess of Wessex, or take part in an adventurous journey abroad,” Lukáš said about the Award.
Mgr. Ivo Helebrant, Head of the 1st International Secondary School of Ostrava, shared his practical experiences with providing the DofE Award programme. He believes the Award is a very beneficial tool for the development of young people. He stressed in particular the wide range of activities and focus on voluntariness. “Not every child succeeds in pursuing an activity regularly, but those who persevere in their quest for the Award, irrespective of its level, will become enriched with many experiences and the knowledge that they have succeeded.” Mr. Helebrant rated favourably that the DofE Award is connected with little administration and that the support from the National Office of the DofE Award is excellent.
The meeting took place in the lounge of the Pardubice Town Hall under the auspices of JUDr. Martin Netolický, Ph.D., President of the Pardubice Region. It was attended by 15 educational institutions, 2 children’s homes and 13 secondary and vocational schools. The introduction of the DofE Award was followed by a reception, with a lively debate on the benefits of the Award to young people, the schools and institutions providing the Award, and on the extraordinary experiences connected with participating in the Award.
A photo gallery from the event can be found here.