Leader’s Resources


Update! DofE expeditions are back on from 10th May 2021.

On 16th April 2021, the Scottish Government updated their guidance on outdoor expeditions:

  • Maximum group size of 9 including the expedition leader
  • Zero interaction with others outside the expedition group.
  • Individuals sleeping in single person tents outdoors.
  • Equipment or food must not be shared
  • Both participants and leaders to observe social distancing at all times
  • School provided travel arrangements to follow latest guidance on reducing Coronavirus risks in schools.
  • Private transport must not be shared outwith households
  • Expeditions should take place locally, avoiding popular areas
  • Where available, washing and toilet facilities reserved for single person use at any one time.
  • Relevant school Covid-19 protocols are maintained during the expedition.
  • Scottish Government guidance MUST be adhered to at all times

To be clear:

  • Each participant and Leader must be equipped with their own tent & cooking equipment (unless sharing within a household)
  • DofE rule relaxations include pre-placement of equipment

Download an example Covid Procedures & Risk Assessment

Training meetings

From 26th April 2021, volunteer led expedition training can take place outdoors in Aberdeenshire, subject to precautions:

  • Leaders should familiarise themselves with Sport Scotland’s Covid risk mitigation measures
  • Carry out a risk assessment
  • Make a record of all who attend
  • Keep groups of participants & leaders to a maximum of 9
  • Keep groups apart

The factors considered when concluding that expeditions should remain local were: 
  • Anticipated high visitor numbers impacting the countryside, it is vital for the future sustainability of DofE expeditions that we safeguard our good relations with the Cairngorm National Park DofE Expeditions Liaison Group and other land managers
  • Increased possibility campsites will already be in use by others who have not notified land management
  • Impact of increased car journeys on the environment due to inability to share transport
  • Parking difficulties due to increased volumes of users
  • Increased volume of users reduces the ability to socially distance on path pinch points
  • Risk of spreading Coronavirus between home and expedition area
  • Speed & ease of returning home should anyone develop Coronavirus symptoms during the expedition 
  • Opportunities to take advantage of the temporary DofE flexibilities & allowances
  • DofE Scotland policy encourages sustainable local expeditions where possible 

DofE With A Difference

Details of the temporary relaxations of rules regarding volunteering within the family, changing activities and expedition assessors

Download the “Rearranging Postponed DofE Expeditions” flyer here

Download a sample Covid-19 Expedition Risk Assessment template here.

Download a pdf of suggestions on how to support your DofE participants during the pandemic restrictions here.

Suggested Centre action plan


Other general information:

Please get in touch with the DofE Aberdeenshire team at awards@aberdeenshire.gov.uk if we can support your plans in any way.

Find out about DofE training and search for courses here.

A great deal of information and resources for Leaders can be found on the main DofE website

For example:

Blank route cards, training frameworks and much more at Expedition Downloads

Materials to promote and introduce DofE, programme planning sheets for participants & leaders, programme section ideas, section activity logsheets, residential guides etc at Programme Support Downloads

Estate contact details, Wild Country boundaries and local advice etc at  Greater Cairngorm information

Programme Planners for Skill, Physical & Volunteering Sections

Submit an Assessor’s Report

Please see below for documents specifically relevant to delivering the Award in Aberdeenshire:

Expedition Training Pack An invaluable 70Mb Zip file comprising expansive teaching resources organised for delivery of the Expedition Training Programme.  Difficulty in downloading?  Alternative sources here and here

Expedition Training Checklist

Expedition Assessor Report Template  An aide-memoire/ checklist for compiling expedition assessment notes

Assessor Reaccreditation Form EAAS8  Required of assessors every 5 years

IMPORTANT Check Suitability of a Gold Residential before participants book  RESIDENTIAL – Info and Approval Form

Supporting a DofE participant leaflet

eDofE Enrolment Form – Participants NEW

Participant Pack Order Form 2020/21

eDofE YouTube channel  Useful “how-to” videos for Participants and Leaders

Camping Stove Fuel Storage Advice 

Leader’s eDofE Intro Flowchart

Base Contact Training

Emergency response card

Titling of Trips on Evolve & Green Forms

Expedition paperwork process A breakdown of the notification/ approval steps for Coordinators and Expedition Leaders

Evolve Staff Starter Guide

Evolve EVC Starter Guide

Evolve Initial Approval Form

Extended leaders advice on 20 conditions

A presention about caring for the Cairngorm National Park

St John’s Ambulance teaching course dedicated to the Duke of Edinburgh Award expedition first aid.

Health and Wellbeing article/ local case study on benefits of DofE Award on participant’s wellbeing

Tent pitching video and other resources from the suppliers of Endurance tents

Tent Pitching video for anybody who hasn’t been camping!

Mountaineering Scotland has a very informative website including much on Mountain Safety.  For example advice on the risks of lightning

Volunteer expense claim form

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