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Harry aims high, gets gold

23 May 2017

Year 13 student Harry Hartstone has attained the highest level of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award – the Gold Award.

In recognition of his achievement, Harry received a certificate and badge at assembly on Tuesday 23 May. He will be formally presented with his Gold Award at a ceremony officiated by the Governor General later in the year.

To achieve a Gold Award, entrants must be 16 years old, and able to complete the five compulsory sections – service, skill, physical recreation, adventurous journey and residential project – over the course of at least 12 months.

Harry started the day he turned 16. He says it was relatively straightforward for him to complete the award, “I was already doing a service and sport and a skill, so all I needed to do was go on a couple of tramps and take part in a residential project … probably the hardest part was to make sure I kept good records and to remember to write everything down.”

His involvement with the Chapel Choir and volunteering as a field marshal for athletics qualified as service, with skill covered by violin lessons and his participation in various musical groups, hockey and athletics ticked all the boxes for physical recreation, and his voyage on the Spirit of New Zealand dovetailed neatly with the requirements of the residential project. Harry chose to do both his practice and qualifying adventurous journey with the Joshua Foundation, an independent organisation that regularly runs expeditions for students doing the award.

Harry says he would tell anyone to give the Duke of Edinburgh Hillary Award a go. “It’s not difficult once you get into a routine. It gets you off the sofa and takes you to all sorts of interesting places, you never know what you might learn. It’s a lot of fun.”

Harry Hartstone Gold DOE

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