As one of the world’s leading initiatives to engage with, and promote positive accomplishments amongst the world’s youth population, the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has continued to inspire and help young people achieve their potential throughout the world. In no other region has this been more apparent than in the continent of Africa.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award empowers those between 14 and 25 years old to be active, enthusiastic contributors to the world around them. In Africa this has culminated in a variety of initiatives and projects set up across many different countries in that region. Those who run the awards hope that through engaging with young people in numerous places, that the biggest possible positive impact can be made. The success of the organisation can be seen through a range of impressive statistics which show that each year 300,000 people take part in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, many of whom come from difficult or underprivileged backgrounds.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has a team operating in Africa which has had a significant number of successes. This team coordinates with projects across the African continent ensuring that an increasing number of young people in that part of the world have access to the life affirming, confidence building, and fun activities which are offered by the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Edwin Kimani and Martin Matabishi, in their capacities as the Africa Regional Director and Africa Regional Programme Manager respectively, work with 21 national operators across the continent as well as a further 20 independent Duke of Edinburgh’s Award centres.
Initiatives carried out in Africa have included engaging with communities in Ghana through a charity called Village by Village. Through volunteering with this organisation, individuals under 25 can add this achievement to their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Volunteers contribute their time to help teach English to children of West African communities in Ghana, assist construction workers to complete the important amenities and buildings required for the region to prosper, coach children in a variety of sports, assist professionals in providing health care and health clinics, offer business advice to developing businesses, or capture the spirit of Africa in photographs which will go on to promote the cause.
Initiatives such as Village by Village show the impact that the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has on an international level, providing both, philanthropic services, as well as helping young people develop into well rounded and conscientious adults.
Operating since 1956, the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award offers a World Fellowship initiative where successful business people and philanthropists such as Tunde Folawiyo (for more information please visit this Tunde Folawiyo bio) continue to contribute their time and resources to helping the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award change the lives of as many young people as possible, for the better.