FOR USE ON INTERNATIONAL VOLUNTEER DAY
San Antonio Educator Receives Royal Recognition for Global Youth Program
Lisa Westergard of Saint Maryâ€™s Hall recognized as one of a select group of people worldwide to be congratulated for her outstanding support to young people through The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award
For more than three years, Lisa Westergard of Saint Maryâ€™s Hall has provided inspirational leadership to the youth of San Antonio through her work with The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award USA â€“ also known as Award USA. The program is the worldâ€™s leading youth achievement award since 1956, operating in over 130 countries and territories with over one million participants throughout the world.
And as the world marks International Volunteer Day on Sunday, December 5, Lisa Westergard is set to receive a special delivery from an unlikely source – a royal prince.
To mark the centenary of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, the Award he founded is celebrating some of its most inspiring volunteers and mentors around the world. In recognition of the exceptional work they do in support of Award participants, they will receive a letter of commendation from His Royal Highness Prince Edward â€“ Prince Philip and Queen Elizabethâ€™s son and Chairman of the International Award Foundation. Â â€“ Ms. Westergard and other Award recipients will receive a special commemorative coin marking the life and legacy of the Duke, produced by the Royal Mint in the UK.
Award USA sought to have one of its 1,100 volunteers and mentors recognized, as their work often goes unnoticed. â€śWe are powered by our amazing volunteers and mentors. The dynamic, regular contact they provide to our young people is extraordinary. We know that every young person needs one to two adults, outside of their family, who see their potential, who nurture them. We are proud of all of our Award Coordinators, Leaders, and Assessors who help young people earn their Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award,â€ťÂ said Elizabeth Higgins-Beard, CEO to Award USA.Â â€śWe are particularly delighted to have a global recognition for Ms. Lisa Westergard. She is an enthusiastic leader dedicated to ensuring that Award participants at Saint Maryâ€™s Hall achieve their goals and make a positive impact for themselves and their communities. Lisa went above and beyond to ensure that the young people at Saint Maryâ€™s Hall could continue to make progress during COVID and safely supported them on their Adventurous Journey.â€ť
â€śLeading and cultivating a program as distinguished as The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s Award is a mighty and lofty task,â€ť shared Dr. Liz Stockdale, Head of Upper School at Saint Maryâ€™s Hall. Â â€śMs. Lisa Westergard exemplifies the patience, compassion, vulnerability, and integrity required to support students as they encounter the world beyond Saint Maryâ€™s Hall and discover their passions. Adolescents feel strength and competence when they know they have been challenged and have achieved high expectations. The program that Ms. Westergard mentors on our campus communicates these high expectations and empowers students to reach their potential. It is an honor to be her colleague and witness her incredible work in this program and beyond.â€ť Additionally, Head of School Len Miller said, â€śLisa is a dedicated mentor to these young scholars.Â Her leadership has inspired these students to test themselves and look for even more ways to positively impact our community.â€ť
Clare Maclennan, Director of Commemorative Coin at The Royal Mint, said: â€śThe Duke of Edinburgh and The Royal Mint enjoyed a close relationship for many years, with the Prince serving as President of The Royal Mint Advisory Committee from 1952 until 1999. As such, we were delighted to create a coin celebrating the legacy of this remarkable man, and to support the work of the charity by gifting 100 coins to 100 incredible volunteers.â€ť
The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award is a global, non-formal education framework that challenges young people to develop new skills, get physically active, cultivate a sense of adventure in the outdoors, and volunteer in their communities.
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For more information, case studies or Award content in the United States: contact Lisa Metzger-Mugg, Vice President of Program and Operations at firstname.lastname@example.org or 773-209-5958.
Notes to Editors:
The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award USA
- The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award is the worldâ€™s leading youth achievement award, equipping young people for life. With a proven framework operating in more than 130 countries and territories around the world, the Award is available for all young people ages 14 to 24, regardless of their background, culture, physical ability, skills and interests. It is a fully inclusive program and has no social, political or religious affiliations.
- Its US division,#AwardUSA,Â is now in its fifth year, established in 2016.
- As todayâ€™s young people face the unprecedented challenges from COVID-19 and beyond, as well as calls to address racial injustice, the Award is dedicated to ensuring that young people will have what they need for the future: to benefit from great non-formal education and learning.
- The Duke of Edinburghâ€™s International Award is a global, non-formal education framework which challenges young people to develop new skills, get physically active, learn about teamwork and leadership through adventurous journey and volunteer within their
- It was founded by HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in 1956, in conjunction with German educationalist Kurt Hahn and Lord Hunt.
- There are currently more than a million young people completing their own unique Award program, via hundreds of thousands of youth-focused partners and operators, including schools, youth organizations, examination boards and youth offender
- For more information on the impact of the International Award, including recent social value analysis, please visitÂ https://usaward.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Changing-Lives-in-the-Changing-World_PwC-Report_June-2019.pdf
- National and international case studies, imagery and additional video content are available on request.