Friends of the Award, Edinburgh and the Lothians

By Toria Bryson

Friends of the Award, Edinburgh and the Lothians (FOTA) is the latest to receive funding from the Alpkit Foundation. The FOTA is a charity, providing financial assistance and fundraising in order to make the DofE award accessible to all within the Edinburgh and Lothians area. Their inclusive DofE Expedition Programme aims to increase opportunities for young people to participate at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels. They would like to help 25 disadvantaged young people aged 14 - 25 years old, supporting them throughout the award.

Joanna, from FOTA explains the project further. “Since 1998, FOTA has worked to provide support for disadvantaged and vulnerable young people, to encourage participation in the DofE Award as a tool to develop life and vocational skills. The Expedition Section is often the most difficult for young people to complete due to resources and support required. Our targeted mental health and youth development project participants have the additional barrier of poverty and additional support needs. This restricts many from completing the Award. The expeditions are run by our expedition co-ordinator and qualified volunteer leaders. The benefits for young people participating in expeditions include gaining confidence, challenging themselves, developing independence, making new friends, learning new skills, developing their teamwork and leadership skills and learning about the outdoors.”

Friends of the Award would like help in supporting participants as they are not able to provide all the equipment and funding needed.

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