Julie to complete the Bronze Level of NNAS

Julie McElroy is now back to take on a new personal challenge in the Outdoor circuit to complete her Bronze Level of the National Navigation Award Scheme, (NNAS).

The opportunity for Julie to complete the Bronze Level of the National Navigation Award Scheme, (NNAS) was given to her by Robert Bell. Robert will become Julie’s tutor and assessor of the Bronze Level.

Julie is delighted that Robert will lead her through the Bronze Level of the National Navigation Award Scheme, (NNAS).

Julie says “It is crucial that you find someone who understand your needs. Given that I am profoundly deaf, Robert will be doing a dual roles for me. It is important that the one-to-one programme is delivered for me as there is so much to take on in the outdoor and it is vital that the information is disseminated correctly to me in this pursuit if I am to tackle more outdoor ventures in the future. When I first met Robert at the Scotland’s Duke of Edinburgh Award’s engagement earlier this year, Robert developed a good communication strategy with me so it clicked from there”.

Robert lives in Edinburgh having previously served fifteen years in the Army (Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders).  Since leaving, Robert has gone onto crave various careers and one them in the outdoor pursuits and is qualified in many areas of the outdoor with young people at the forefront of his fulfilment.

He is a qualified National Navigation Awards Scheme (NNAS) course provider and assessor. Also a qualified Summer Mountain Leader registered with Mountain Training Association and accredited Duke of Edinburgh Expedition Assessor up to Gold level.  He is also an adult instructor with the Army Cadet Force (ACF).

Robert first became involved in the National Navigation Award Scheme (NNAS) from his father who was a course provider at the time.

NNAS (National Navigation Award Scheme) registered providers offer training in skill development, and assessment to participants.  The scheme is not in itself a leadership qualification. It concerns personal performance and is non-competitive.  The various levels of the scheme lets everyone experience and demonstrate technical competence in navigation. Normally participants begin with the Bronze award and progress through the Silver and Gold awards, with a period of further experience and consolidation between.

Julie and Robert met at the Scotland’s Duke of Edinburgh Award’s Expedfest weekend earlier this year where Julie was there as an invited guest, in the role as a DofE ambassador (Scotland). The weekend was specifically held for Duke of Edinburgh Award’s leaders and assessors.

It was only recently that Robert and Julie met up to share Duke of Edinburgh Award’s experiences and Robert offered Julie the chance to complete the Bronze Level of the National Navigation Awards Scheme (NNAS).

Speaking of the opportunity to work with Julie, Robert says “Julie has a deep desire to try new challenges as and when they arise.  She pushes herself to achieve these challenges and in doing so, inspires others.  She has shown me that she has the determination to succeed and wishes to learn a new skill”.

Robert went to say “Julie is an amazing woman.  Over many years, Julie has put all her energy into completing new outdoor challenges and arena sports. From climbing Ben Nevis, to walking in the Andes.  Julie is and inspiration to all, not just within the disabled community but within the able bodied community too”.

Julie’s undertaking of the Bronze Level of the National Navigation Award Scheme, (NNAS) will be exceptional because of her personal circumstances and the adversity Julie has pushed in the outdoor pursuits in previous years.

Julie from Glasgow, was born both profoundly deaf and with Cerebral Palsy, which affects the messages sent between the brain and the muscles, which affects her movements and coordination.

Julie says “It a different challenge altogether as I have always wanted to do another award. Recently, I looked at outdoor qualifications but the prospect of doing some of these qualifications was challenging given changes in the complexity of my walking was hard to come by. When Robert suggested the possibility of doing the Bronze Level of the National Navigation Award Scheme, (NNAS), I realised it could be about to open new direction for me and it fantastic to have Robert help me unleash it”.

Robert too is looking forward to the journey ahead as he says “Everyday Julie faces some challenge in one way or the other that is a fact of life for her. The National Navigation Award Scheme (NNAS) will be no different. However, I believe that she has the confidence, manner, attitude, diligence and enthusiasm to succeed”.



  1. More information about Julie McElroy, including a short biography, is available at http://www.juliemcelroy.com/
  2. Robert Bell – More information about Robert’s Outdoor remits
  3. NNAS
    National Navigation Award Scheme– learn navigation skills and gain confidence to get out and enjoy the countryside.
  4. Duke of Edinburgh Award
    The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (commonly abbreviated DofE), is an award given for completing a programme of activities that can be undertaken by anyone aged 14 to 24. DofE programmes take between 1 year and 4 years to complete, depending upon the route taken. All programmes must be completed by the participant’s 25th birthday. Around 275,000 participants are taking part in their DofE programme at any time in the United Kingdom.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s