On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Duke of Edinburgh Award, young people from around the world were selected to attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace. This was truly momentous, as normally only Gold Award holders from within the UK are invited, but International Award winners are not.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award for Young People has been running at the International School of Paphos (ISOP) for eight years. This year, ISOP graduate and Gold award winner Alexandros Papoutsas was lucky enough to be chosen to represent Cyprus at this special event.
On Monday 16th May 2016, Alexandros and the other winners had a welcome breakfast at the Duke of Edinburgh's Award House. Later, at Buckingham Palace, the award holders and their guests were welcomed with Afternoon Tea and biscuits and had chance to walk around the gardens before the official ceremony. Each group saw the Duke of Edinburgh, his son, Prince Edward, and the Countess of Wessex, who welcomed the awardees and spoke to them. This was followed by a chance to view Buckingham Palace, before the day came to an end.
Mrs Claire Polycarpou, initiator and leader of the International Award programme at ISOP since 2008, commented: “It was an amazing opportunity for our Award Unit. We are very proud of Alexandros, who like many of our participants, completed the whole programme of Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards with us.”