Our Guiding Principles

"Young people growing up in this modern, complicated world have many difficulties to face, and opportunities for personal achievement are often limited. At the same time, parents, teachers, voluntary organization leaders, and employers, who recognize their responsibilities towards young people, also have their challenges. The Award is intended to help both the young as well as those who are concerned for their welfare. The object is to provide an introduction to worthwhile leisure activities and voluntary service, as a challenge to the individual to discover the satisfaction of achievement and as a guide for those people and organizations who would like to encourage the development of their young fellow citizens." HRH The Duke of Edinburgh - Founder of the Award 


The Award is 

A marathon, not a sprint 
The Award cannot be completed quickly. It’s all about sustaining an ongoing commitment in activities of choice, perseverance, and developing good habits. It takes commitment to see it through and earn something over the long term.  Efforts are recognized over time and the achievement is a young person’s own improvement. 

Non- academic and non competitive 
The Award is a personal challenge which recognizes that there are a lot of aspects to a well-rounded person, including achievements outside the classroom. Anyone who puts in the effort will receive the Award, so youth can collaborate with peers instead of competing with them. The Award is based on personal choice and reflects the abilities and interests of individual participants. No two Awards are alike! 

The Award offers a framework for youth to focus their interests, improve their abilities and do something they’ve always wanted to do. Young people enter The Award at the level that best suits them and choose activities that fit in with their life. Young people may take as long as they wish to complete an Award, as long as it is completed by their 25th Birthday.  

As youth grow, The Award grows with them. At Bronze they may need a lot of help. At Silver, they are more independent. By Gold they build their own experience. 

The Award is fun. The activities that a young person selects reflect their own interests and passions.  Also doing The Award great way to spend time with friends and making memories that will last forever. 

Benefits of doing the Award  

Open to everyone 
Any young person aged 14-24 can do The Award, no matter their gender, cultural background, religious or political affiliation or physical ability. An Award is gained through individual improvement and achievement, which means that disadvantaged young people and those with special needs are able to participate fully!  

Great on applications 
Having the Award looks great on CVs, resumes, post-secondary applications, and scholarships. Whether applying for post-secondary or about to enter the work force, The Award shows commitment and achievement, as well as dedication to a variety of activities. It also gives young people an opportunity to talk about themselves and their passions outside of their formal education.   

It's a process, not a prize 
The Award is a process of personal and social development; the activities which make up the Award are a means to this end. Young people learn from the new experiences they have and discover hidden capabilities and talents.

Our Guiding Principles​

1. Individual
Individuals design their own program, which can be tailored to suit their personal circumstances, choices and local provision. They start at whichever level suits them best and they can take as long as they wish (within the age limit) to achieve their Award. 

2. Non-competitive
Doing their Award is a personal challenge and not a competition against others. Every participant’s program is tailor-made to reflect their individual starting point, abilities and interests.

 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-achievable-png.png   3. Achievable
An Award is achievable by any individual who chooses to take up the challenge, regardless of ability, gender, background or location, with the right guidance and inspiration.
 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-voluntary-png.png   4. Voluntary
Whilst the Award may be offered within school, college, work time, custody or extra-curricular activity, individuals choose to do a program and must commit a substantial amount of their free time to undertake their activities.
 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-developmental-png.png   5. Developmental
Participating in their Award program fosters personal and social development. Individuals gain valuable experiences and life skills, grow in confidence and become more aware of their environment and community, transforming them in to responsible young adults. 

6. Balanced
The Award provides a balanced framework to develop the individual’s mind, body and community spirit by engaging them in four activities at Bronze and Silver levels, and five activities at Gold level.

 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-progressive-png.png   7. Progressive
At each level, the Award demands progressively more time, commitment and responsibility from the participant. 
 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-inspirational-png.png   8. Inspirational
The Award inspires individuals to exceed their expectations. They are encouraged to set their own challenges and goals before starting an activity, aim for these goals and by showing improvement, will move towards achieving an Award. 
 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-persistence-png.png   9. Persistence
The Award requires persistence and cannot be completed with a short burst of enthusiasm. Participants are encouraged to continue with activities and to maintain their interest beyond their program requirements. 
 /_uploads/images/icons/award-icons-enjoyable-png.png   10. Enjoyable
Participants and Leaders should find the Award enjoyable, fulfilling and rewarding.