Committed Christian has a golden day out

Christian Harvey attended The Duke of Edinburgh Gold award Presentation at Holyroodhouse Palace Gardens
Christian Harvey attended The Duke of Edinburgh Gold award Presentation at Holyroodhouse Palace Gardens

Standing proud, a former Amble pupil is celebrating after receiving the prestigious Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award.

Committed Christian Harvey, 21, attended a presentation ceremony at Holyrood House Palace Gardens, in Edinburgh, last Wednesday, , in the presence of HRH The Earl of Wessex.

It was a fitting reward for the hard work he has put into making it this far.

Christian, a former pupil at Coquet High School, which is now James Calvert Spence College – Acklington Road, said: “Doing the award through the school gave me a great start and provided me with a greater self-belief and personal confidence.

“It has also given me a desire to take on new challenges. The programme gives you a hunger to do more adventurous things in the future.”

Christian, who is currently studying product design at Northumbria University, added: “I wouldn’t have had the confidence to do the things I have done since if it wasn’t for the Duke of Edinburgh programme.”

The Duke of Edinburgh Award is the world’s leading achievement award for young people. And getting Gold is no easy task.

The Award’s website states that obtaining this level shows the participant has the ‘skills, determination and mentality to really succeed’.

Anyone aged between 14 and 24 can do a Duke of Edinburgh programme at one of three progressive levels which, when successfully completed, lead to a Bronze, Silver or Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award.

There are four sections at bronze and silver level and five at gold.

The categories are volunteering, physical, skills and expedition, as well as residential at gold level.

Christian’s progress to achieve Gold involved a four-day hiking expedition camping out in the Pennine Hills. The expedition team incurred some extreme weather conditions.

He was leader of the youth committee which worked with a number of organisations to secure funding for Amble’s skate park, which culminated in the opening in July 2011.

Christian joined others from the Duke of Edinburgh Gold scheme to complete the residential section of the programme by kayaking 74 miles over five days and four nights down the River Spey in Scotland in 2010.