LONDON, England – Colleagues at Heathrow took the plunge today (23/02) as they launched the airport’s campaign to support The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE) Diamond Challenge.
Since 2012, Heathrow has offered colleagues under the age of 25 the chance to achieve their Gold DofE Award to build new skills and help them develop into future leaders. In the Charity’s Diamond Anniversary year, colleagues from across the airport are undertaking some very special and daring challenges to celebrate the impact of the Award over the past 60 years.
The launch began with some of the Heathrow team abseiling down the inside of Terminal 5 from Departures to Arrivals. With around 100 people taking part in the abseil alone, colleagues are aiming to raise thousands for the Charity.
Over 150 colleagues have opted to take on the FITBIT Challenge – pledging to walk, run, cycle or row the equivalent distance of one of Heathrow’s 180 worldwide destinations by the end of June. Between them this will total over 400,000 miles. Representatives from British Military Fitness were on hand during the event to help colleagues limber up for their challenge.
HRH The Earl of Wessex was in attendance, and was presented with his own FITBIT tracker, and challenged to walk, run, cycle or row the distance to Manchester, where he will shortly be embarking on the next leg of his Royal Diamond Tour. The Earl also met 20 young people from across the airport who have completed the prestigious Gold DofE Award and attended a special business lunch.
Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “It was an honour to host HRH The Earl of Wessex at Terminal 5 to launch our DofE Diamond Challenge activities. We are proud to support The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, because it helps young people to fulfil their potential. This year we are encouraging people of all ages from across the Heathrow community to do the same by taking part in a Diamond Challenge.”
Heathrow is proud to be supporting the DofE during its Diamond Anniversary year, in recognition of the contribution the Charity has made. Colleagues from across the airport are also pledging to come up with their own challenges and help raise money. The funds raised from the DofE Diamond Challenge will be used to fund the DofE’s Diamond Ambition to work with 2 million young people by 2020, including 400,000 from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Peter Westgarth, CEO of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award adds: “As we celebrate 60 years of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, it’s great to have such fantastic support from Heathrow. The staff have really gotten behind the DofE Diamond Challenge, and we’re looking forward to hearing about how far they’ve travelled on their FITBIT challenges.”
In its anniversary year, the DofE is encouraging people of all ages to set and achieve their goals through the DofE Diamond Challenge. This is a one-off initiative for 2016 that aims to give everyone a flavour of the life-changing benefits of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.