More Norfolk young people sought after Duke of Edinburgh programme helps young woman become a firefighter
Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service is appealing for more young people locally to take part in a Duke of Edinburgh Award programme that the service runs, and which has recently helped a young woman from London to become a firefighter.
Norfolkâ€™s is the only Fire and Rescue Service in the country to run the week-long Duke of Edinburgh Award Gold Residential programme.
TheÂ programme takes place five times a year (during school holidays), providing 17-25 year olds from across the UK with an opportunity to experience tasks and activities related to Fire and Rescue Service work.
Based at Fakenham Fire Station, the programme focuses on tasks and challenges, and just like operational crews, those taking part work, eat and rest together to provide a realistic experience of what itâ€™s like to be part of a Fire and Rescue Service.
The scheme has been running for five years in total and Izzy Ryan, 21, from London, recently became the first student from the course to be employed as a full-time firefighter â€“ joining London Fire Brigade.
After successfully completing the course in Norfolk in 2013, Izzy returned to the county last summer (2015) to volunteer with the Fire and Rescue Service, helping firefighters to run the Duke of Edinburgh course that she had attended two years before.
She assisted with a variety of different team building tasks and drills, from dam building, hose running, to rescuing casualties from the breathing apparatus chamber.
Izzy said:Â â€œIt has been without a doubt the toughest thing I have had to do but the most rewarding opportunity. To be 21 years of age and have fulfilled my ambition to become a firefighter is amazing. I have a lot of people and organisations to thank for getting me to this point and giving me all these brilliant opportunities from volunteering as a fire cadet instructor in London, to being an applicant on the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service D of E residential, to being given the opportunity to come back and volunteer with Norfolk Fire and Rescue.Â Itâ€™s been an amazing journey so far.â€
Mark Keddie, Duke of Edinburgh Award Advisor at Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, said: â€œIt is fantastic that we attract young people from all over the country and beyond. However, we would encourage more local young people to think about taking part as this is an excellent opportunity for them right on their doorstep in Norfolk. Employers recognise that the DofE helps young people to develop essential work-ready skills including resilience, commitment, self-motivation and team working, and that D of E Award holders are just the type of young recruits they want in their workplaces.
â€œOf course, the programme also provides great fire and rescue experience. We were delighted that Izzy took up the challenge of our course in Norfolk, returned to volunteer with us, and that experience has helped play a part in her, deservingly, securing a fire fighter role in London. She has achieved her ambition of joining London Fire Brigade, in her home city, and we wish her every success.â€
Information regarding our residential can be found on the Duke of Edinburgh section of the website orÂ alternatively through the Duke of Edinburghâ€™s Award website, opportunity finder link http://www.dofe.info/finder/