Vango teams up with adventurer Sam Sykes and DofE to tear up the terrain with Nottingham teens

This month UK adventurer Sam Sykes will lead teenagers from a Nottingham school on an expedition around the Lake District, as leading UK outdoor equipment manufacturer Vango, supports pupils completing their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

The adventure will see Vango provide the opportunity for 14 specially selected pupils of Bulwell Academy to take to the hills this month to complete part of their Duke of Edinburgh’s award. Vango will supply camping and hiking equipment as well as fully-funding the DofE award for the teens. The expedition will be headed up by Vango ambassador Sam Sykes, a British adventurer and outdoor pursuits instructor.

Each year, the DofE works with over 3,500 organisations to run a range of activities for participants. One such organisation is Sam Sykes Ltd. After climbing his first mountain at the age of eight, Sam went on to scale the heights of Europe’s largest mountain, and it was with this passion that he set up Sam Sykes Ltd. in 2009. The company offer professional outdoor education packages across the UK and overseas.

As a recommended kit supplier of the DofE award scheme, Vango will be providing the intrepid pupils of Bulwell Academy with all of the kit they need for a successful trip. To get around during the day, the pupils will use Contour rucksacks and Velan boots, and for a sound night’s sleep, they will be given Vango Halo tents, Nitestar sleeping bags and Trek sleeping mats. The kit will support those that otherwise may not have had the opportunity to participate in the challenge. Working closely with the DofE, Vango kit has been designed to be easy-to-use and performance led, ideal for young explorers.

Rob Birrell, Vango Marketing Director, said: “Vango are delighted to be able to partner with The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and provide the kids with DofE recommended kit to take them through the first part of their award. The experience will provide them with great life skills and give them a true sense of adventure, which we are all about at Vango.”

For Sam, working on projects such as this is something that is close to his heart: “When Vango got in touch about the opportunity to run the expedition with the pupils at Bulwell I jumped at the chance. I have always been interested in exploring from the moment I was born.

“I believe that it is vitally important for kids to get outside and experience real adventure. The DofE award scheme offers a unique way of doing this. I am very proud to support Vango and Bulwell Academy with their expedition, and look forward to sharing this great adventure with them.”

The Academy has been chosen by the DofE to provide fully-funded places on the award scheme through Vango.

Mrs Strong, Principal at Bullwell, said: “We cannot thank Vango, Sam Skyes Ltd and DofE enough for this amazing opportunity for our pupils. Here at Bulwell Academy we believe that all young people can be successful, regardless of their background. We focus on helping our students to become better learners; to increase their resilience, to raise their aspirations and prepare them for the next stages in their life. This adventure helps them to do this.

“The DofE award is an important way for pupils to gain experience and build their confidence. Without support from Vango and the support from Sam Skyes Ltd. and DofE this is something our pupils may never have had the opportunity to try.”

Set up in 1956 by HRH Prince Philip, the DofE award scheme is a youth achievement award, which encourages young people to gain new skills and enhance their CV through activities such as hiking, camping, exploring and volunteering. In 2018, over 153,000 young people completed their own personal expedition as part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Keen to attract teenagers from all backgrounds, the DofE award scheme has set up the Diamond Fund designed to support teenagers from disadvantaged communities take part in the activities.

For over ten years Vango has partnered with The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award to provide great quality products suitable for DofE expeditions and beyond, and for every item purchased, Vango will contribute to The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award charity to help enable them to support more young people complete their DofE.

To find out more about the official Vango DofE kit list, click here.

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