For the first time in BIS Hanoi, and indeed in Vietnam, we were happy to be running the Silver level of the International Award this year!
Our Year 11 student Ha Quoc Huy is the first Vietnamese person to move from Bronze to Silver successfully while in Vietnam. Other partipcants were made up of Year 11, Year 12P and almost all
students from Year 12.
This year’s Silver 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 particpants include assisting in the running of a Homework Club and participating in work to support local charities. Participants have been involved in some very diverse Skills, ranging from art work to teaching dogs to follow instructions!
In November we all set off to Mai Chau for the Silver Practice Expedition. One descent was a sheer mountainside of an altitude of 1200 m to the valley floor. Setting up camp for two nights at Hmong and Tay villages was a great experience for the participants, including cooking for themselves.
In January, following the rigorous Mock Exams, it was the final, Qualifying Expedition. This took place in the hills around Mt Langbiang in Dalat. Here the routes were longer, but shade was more easily found. The big challenge in Dalat was navigation – with the aid of excellent maps, and compasses, the teams had to find the route through the hills for themselves. This lead to many wrong turns, including one detour of over an hour! Camping out in the countryside, away even from the local villages, was a fantastic experience for the participants, even if Quoc Hung stayed up far too late looking for shooting stars (he never saw one).
Next year – Gold!
Silver Duke of Edinburgh International Award