Invictus Games soldier presents Duke of Edinburgh Awards

Invictus Games soldier presents Duke of Edinburgh Awards

Young students with D of E awards and James WilsonOver a hundred students attended the Duke of Edinburgh Awards presentation at Brockenhurst College. Students and scouts from across the region, including those from the College, came to collect their awards after months of hard work and dedication.

The D of E Award is the world’s leading achievement award for people aged 14-24. The charity helps young people to reach their full potential by completing a programme of activities.

James Wilson, a decorated soldier who served in Afghanistan, presented the scouts and students with their Silver and Gold awards.

James was severely injured whilst serving as a solider, resulting in an amputation of both of his legs. After going through a lengthy recovery process, he began intense training and powerlifting. Through sheer determination and perseverance, James entered The Invictus Games and won Gold in the Men’s Heavyweight Powerlifting event at in 2014.

He gave sound advice to the young people: “Every day is a little challenge. My advice to all is to knock it on the head and crack on with it. Those who won Bronze medals tonight can go on to win Silver and those who have Silver can go on to get the Gold. Keep doing what you’re doing through determination and the right attitude.”

Three members of the Hampshire Scouts delivered a presentation about their experiences volunteering in Gambia, Africa. They spent their time building roofs, painting classrooms and refurbishing libraries to help the local people.

Jozie Peaty, from Ringwood School, commented: “It was a really great evening and something I will always remember.”

Emily Cooper, also from Ringwood School, added: “It brought back all of our achievements and I found James Wilson’s talk really inspiring.”

Gill Spratt, Hampshire County Council D of E Manager, said: “I just want to say a huge thank you to Brockenhurst College for being so generous and accommodating. They have been wonderfully supportive.”

Brockenhurst College offers a Duke of Edinburgh Award as part of its Enrichment programme and organises expeditions for Bronze and Silver levels for its students.