Award USA partners with RSM to pilot innovative virtual volunteer program to help youth achieve success
The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award USAÂ (â€śAward USAâ€ť) â€“ the US office of theÂ world’s largestÂ youth achievementÂ award which equips young people for life â€“ is pleased to announce thatÂ Award USA Â has entered into a partnership with RSM, theÂ nationâ€™s leading provider of audit, tax and consulting services focused on the middle market.
The goal of the Award is to inspire and empower young Americans 14-24 years of age, from all background and communities, to challenge themselves to make positive changes in their lives and their communities. Since 1956, millions of young people have taken part in the Award in more than 130 countries and territories.
Through its partnership with The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award USA, RSM has trained a number of professionals from the firmâ€™s Bay Area, New York and Chicago offices to serve as virtual mentors for youth involved in the Award. This will be the first time the Award program has engaged virtual mentors. RSM plans to expand its involvement as virtual mentors over time to align with the growth of theÂ Award in the United States.
â€śAt RSM, we have a long history of giving back to the communities where our employees live and work,â€ť said Doug Opheim, chief financial officer and chairman of the RSM US Foundation. â€śItâ€™s that spirit of stewardship that, in large part, drove our interest in The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award USA program. Weâ€™re also continuously focused on innovation so we can ensure that we always provide our middle market clients with leading edge audit, tax and consulting services, so when we learned weâ€™d have an opportunity to employ that sense of innovation to enhance our communities through our support of the Award, we jumped at the opportunity.â€ť
â€śWe have been passionate supporters of The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s Award in the UK for twelve years and have witnessed first-hand the work it does as the worldâ€™s leading youth engagement charity,â€ť said David Gilliam with RSM UK Group LLP. â€śItâ€™s fantastic to see RSM US, whose values align with our own, support the Award in the U.S.â€ť
The work being done through The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award USA aligns closely with theÂ RSM US Foundationâ€™s dedication to building tomorrowâ€™s middle market leaders by (1) enhancing educational outcomes through programs focused on building career paths for individuals to become entrepreneurs or middle market business leaders, and/or (2) supporting organizations committed to providing more stable environments for youth in the areas of hunger, housing and health, which will help them excel in education.
Through the foundation, RSM supports those volunteering with the Award program by matching their volunteer time with financial support through the foundationâ€™s Dollars for Doers program.
Lily Rogers, a risk advisory consulting manager in RSMâ€™s San Jose office, is one of the firmâ€™s first leaders to be engaged in the Award program, which includes four areas of focus for participants: physical recreation, service (volunteerism), skills building and an adventurous journey. â€śAs a volunteer in this program, my job is to get to know the participants and understand what theyâ€™re trying to achieve so I can effectively mentor them and help them set and achieve meaningful goals,â€ť said Rogers. â€śItâ€™s very rewarding to see these young people achieve success.â€ť
â€śRSM volunteers are a key component of allowing young people across the United States to participate in the Award,â€ť said Elizabeth Higgins-Beard, CEO of the Award USA. â€śPairing trained volunteers who can connect with youth participants through electronic meansâ€”phone calls, texts, video conferencing and emailâ€”in our Virtual Award Program (VAP) is a global pilot unique to the US, and one that is showing outstanding results. Although each RSM volunteer is based in a metropolitan area, young people in cities, suburbs and rural areas are able to connect with RSMâ€™s mentoring Award Leaders via the VAP. While challenging, the Award allows young people to determine what they are passionate about, regardless of their backgrounds, culture or access to resources. Partnerships with organizations like RSM are key to providing the opportunity for young people to develop their life skills.â€ť
To learn more about the RSM US Foundation and RSMâ€™s philanthropic efforts, visit RSMâ€™sÂ website.
To learn more about participating in the Award and Award USAâ€™s Charter for Business, visit Award USAâ€™sÂ website.
About The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award USA
The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award USA is the national office of the worldâ€™s leading youth achievement award, transforming individuals, communities and societies around the world. In 2017, more than 1.3 million young people aged 14-24 in over 130 countries and territories took part in the Award around the world. The Award in its 65 year history has impacted millions of young people, providing a tried and tested framework for non-formal education that all young people, regardless of their background, have the opportunity to experience. Award USAâ€™s ambition is to inspire and empower all young Americans to challenge themselves and exceed expectations. VisitÂ usaward.org, or follow us onÂ Instagram,Â Twitter, orÂ FacebookÂ to learn more.
About the RSM US Foundation
In 2014, RSM laid the footings of a giving strategy designed to be compelling to our people, our clients and our markets, while enhancing our longstanding support of the communities where our employees live and work. The result is the RSM US Foundation. A tax-exempt public charity, our firmâ€™s foundation is dedicated to building tomorrowâ€™s middle market leaders by enhancing educational outcomes through programs to help individuals develop career paths to become an entrepreneurs or middle market business leaders, and to supporting organizations committed to providing stable environments for youth in the areas of hunger, housing and health, thereby helping them excel in education.
About RSM US LLP
RSMâ€™s purpose is to deliver the power of being understood to our clients, colleagues and communities through world-class audit, tax and consulting services focused on middle market businesses. The clients we serve are the engine of global commerce and economic growth, and we are focused on developing leading professionals and services to meet their evolving needs in todayâ€™s ever-changing business environment.
RSM US LLP is the U.S. member of RSM International, a global network of independent audit, tax and consulting firms with more than 43,000 people in over 120 countries. For more information, visitÂ rsmus.com, like us onÂ Facebook, follow us onÂ TwitterÂ and/or connect with us onÂ LinkedIn.