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Bronze DoE International Award - Sapa Expedition

20 March 2015

This year saw a BIS Hanoi record-breaking number of Year 10 students fully participate in the Bronze International Award.

The International Award is a globally recognised programme of leadership and teamwork skills for young people from all around the world. Last year BIS Hanoi was the first school in Vietnam to set up and run the Award for many years, and the first ever in Hanoi.

This year’s Bronze participants completed their training in Term 1 and then began to work towards completing their personal Skill, Service and Physical Recreation elements of the Award. Some examples of excellent Service provided by our participants include helping our youngest students learn to read and practise these skills and baking and selling cakes to raise money for important local charities. Participants have been involved in some very diverse Skills, ranging from playing instruments to learning magic tricks.
In March we all set off to Mai Chau for the Bronze Practice Expedition. This was a challenging two days trek in very hot and sunny weather and across some difficult hill walks. The students worked hard to try to navigate themselves, matching maps with the terrain around them, and set up camp in Ban Te village for the night. Cooking for themselves and living out in the countryside with their friends is a great learning curve, and many of our participants learnt a lot about the necessary skills (such as packing efficiently!) as well as their own strengths.

In April it was the final, Qualifying Expedition. This took place in Sapa, which raised different challenges. Although the weather was much better for trekking, the route was much longer and many groups were walking for a long, long time! The misty hillsides of Sapa gave way to small villages and then back into the countryside again. Many participants also found two consecutive nights camping a challenge, but all were very positive and rose to all the challenges they faced with resilience and courage.

All that is left for the Bronze participants now is to complete their Skill, Service and Physical Recreations and submit them, and their Expedition, on the Online Record Book. Here is where parents can help; please urge your son or daughter to keep up to date with their ORB and to seek advice where needed!

The Bronze Team look forward to welcoming current Year 9 students into the Bronze Award next year, and many current Bronze participants into Silver!

BIS Hanoi The Bronze Team

Domestic chores add challenge in the Practice Expedition

Hills and farmland in Sapa

The first campsite for the Qualifying Expedition in Sapa

The team as they set off for the Mai Chau Practice