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When Cindy started her Award, she, like many other Award Participants were not prepared for the effect the Coronavirus would have on her ability to do the Award. Now that she is in lockdown for the second time (Cindy is from Victoria) she has found that she loves how the Award gives her something to do and that it has even given her family the motivation to exercise with her. 

Read the interview with Cindy below: 



What is your name, age and level of the Award?

My name is Cindy, I am 15 years old and my level of the Award is Bronze level.  


What activities are you currently doing for each Award Section?

Skills: Improving my piano skills 

Physical Recreation: Workouts/keeping fit on a daily basis  

Voluntary service: Reading buddies with the Smith Family Foundation 

Adventurous Journey: Hike/ Camp through my School school  


Did you have to change or amend any of your activities to be able to do them from home?

Originally for my Physical Recreation, I was going to do swimming at my local aquatic centre, however, due to Covid-19, I had to change to doing workouts and keeping fit at home. 

Thankfully, I did not have to change or alter my activities for the ’Skills’ category or the ‘Voluntary Service’ category, as I have a piano at home so I can still practice my skill and my Voluntary Service activity is reading online with primary school kids so I am not required to leave the house. 

Unfortunately, I am currently unable to change or complete my ‘Adventurou Journey’ activity as that involves going camping which is unfulfillable due to the latest restrictions. However, I am looking forward to completing this activity once the restrictions have been lifted.  


What has been the hardest part about conducting your Award from home?

The hardest part about conducting my Award from home is that I am unable to complete my ‘Adventurous Journey’ category as all school camps have been cancelled. I was really looking forward to going on camp with my friends and developing my camping skills so I am quite disappointed that we will have to wait until the restrictions are eased before we can go. 

Additionally, I am also unable to have piano classes because of Covid-19, and this has had a negative impact on improving my piano skills as I don’t have a teacher to guide me and help me when I am practicing.  


What has been the best part about conducting your Award from home?

The best part about conducting the Award at home is that it is a lot more efficient, as I am able to carry out all my activities other than the AJ at home. It has saved me a lot of time. 

Furthermore, conducting the Award from home has also encouraged my family to take part with me, particularly in the ‘Physical Recreation’ category, as we all go for runs and workout together, thus enabling us to have bonding time as a family.  


What impact has the Award had on you?

The Award has had a major impact on my physical wellbeing, as before doing the Award, I wasn’t keeping active on a daily basis, however, doing the Award has pushed me to keep fit regularly and now I am more motivated to exercise and workout daily even though I have already completed the hours required for Bronze level. 

The Award has also had a significant impact on my piano skills, as I have had to practice for an hour every week and because of this I have seen great improvements in my playing even though I can't do lessons. 


Doing the Award has enabled me to have the wonderful experience of volunteering with the Smith Family Foundation’s Reading Buddies program. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time reading with my buddy as it is very heartwarming to see how far he's come and how much he's improved by the end of the program. 

Overall, I think doing Duke of Ed is such an enjoyable and beneficial experience and I would definitely recommend others to take part!