Becoming an Award Leader

Award Leaders are responsible for one or more Award groups. You’ll lead, guide, inspire and encourage young people, approve their activity choices and goals, inspire their progress and validate completion of their Award.

Volunteering as an Award Leader and helping young people complete their Award is an extremely enriching experience. Watch our Award Leader film to see for yourself!

Help The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award USA equip young people for life.

What is an Award Leader?

Each Award Unit appoints at least two Award Leaders who are the contact person and mentors for Award Participants. As an Award Leader, you play a crucial role in the success of the Award. Your role is to engage young people in the program, and encourage and inspire Participants throughout their Award journey. An organization has two or more Award Leaders to spread the work load and to ensure continuity, as the Award is usually completed over a 12 month period.

Award Leaders are the frontline of the Award, playing one of the most fundamental roles – that of developing the Participants with whom they are actively involved.  Without them there simply would be no Award!

Who can be an Award Leader?

Award Leaders could be anyone from a teacher to a sports coach to a scout leader as long as they are appointed by their organization to do so.

After being trained in the framework and requirements of the Award, the role of an Award Leader is to guide and mentor Participants, helping to translate the Award, set achievable goals and to offer encouragement! They are the support system for Participants who offer motivation and inspiration.

You need to have a positive attitude, a great relationship with young people and meet the requirements of being an Award Leader.

Remember, it is not a sprint, but a marathon, and while many young people can complete the Award through effort over consecutive months, others may take longer and that’s OK. Just stand by them and provide regular support.

Get Started As An Award Volunteer

    An Award Coordinator is an adult who coordinates the activities of the Award Program within their organization. Oftentimes, the Award Coordinator is also an Award Leader.
    An Award Leader is an adult who mentors, guides, and supports young people through their Award journey. They are responsible for ensuring the delivery of a high-quality Award program for Participants.
    Award Assessors must have experience and/or qualifications in the activity chosen by the young person within a section. An Assessor must be suitably skilled to verify that the Participant has achieved the requirements of the Award.
    The Adventurous Journey (AJ) requires adults with experience and interest in the outdoors. An AJ Supervisor both ensures the safety of participants while on their Adventurous Journey and maintains the standards of the Award. AJ Supervisors work with the team of Participants to ensure that they are adequately trained and prepared for their Journey. The AJ Assessor is tasked with maintaining the high standards of the Award and ensuring that the conditions of the Adventurous Journey section are fulfilled.
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If your organization is interested in delivering the Award, register your organization here.

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