The DofE Experience List

Written by Miri Buac

Tags: campaign communications PR

2020 is looking good. That’s if our first campaign for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is anything to go by. We kicked off the new decade securing blanket media coverage and more than 30 national hits for the launch of ‘DofE’s Experience List’ – 25 things teenagers can do to build confidence and resilience.

Tasked with reminding young people, parents, and teachers how great the DofE is for boosting young people’s ‘character’ and ‘employability’, we stripped it right back and asked – do we even know what ‘character’ is and how exactly do we achieve it?

We knew the government created an ‘Activity Passport’ of character building activities for primary school children but that no list existed for teenagers. So we made one.

We worked with the DofE to carry out robust research into what builds character in our formative years. We asked young people, teachers, parents, business leaders, and the public what experiences they’d recommend. We carried out research to identify gaps in the opportunities teenagers have today and how they feel about ‘character’. A survey of business leaders also shed light on whether employers think teenagers are equipped with the skills needed for work.

Cue the Experience List – the definitive list of inspirational and challenging activities young people should have a go at – including ‘try veganism’, ‘digital detox’, and ‘volunteer for a charity’. Reinforcing how rewarding DofE can be for young people, many activities on the list could be experienced while taking part in the Award.

The List went down a storm and received a brilliant reaction from the public and media with phone-ins, comment pieces, and features breaking down favourite experiences and discussing rites of passage.

So far, we’ve secured 82 pieces of coverage and 33 hits across the nationals with highlights including Sky NewsBBC NewsroundBBC Radio 2Radio 4, and 5 Live, 5 pieces in The Telegraph, 3 pieces across the Daily Mail and Mail Online, and 3 pieces inThe Guardian.

Since its launch the Experience List webpage has been viewed by more than 30,000 people, with the social media campaign reaching an audience of over 380k. Across social, we had amazing support from former Dragon James Caan, Girlguiding, #iwill, and lots of schools and teachers across the UK.

Watch this space for more hit campaigns in 2020.

The DofE Experience List being discussed on Sky News

The DofE Experience List being discussed on Sky News

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