The Award

The Award at a Glance

The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is an internationally recognised program for young people, building their skills to equip them for life and work. By creating opportunities for young people to develop skills, get physically active, give service and experience adventure, the Award can play a critical role in their development. The choice to do The Duke of Ed is entirely voluntary and every Award is different. Each Participant chooses what activities they want to take part in for each Section. It is a very personal program that offers young people a structure to fulfil their passions and ambitions in a way that suits them. Apart from the requirements for each Section, and the safety training requirements for the Adventurous Journey Section, the activities a Participant chooses to undertake is entirely up to them. They have the freedom to progress through The Duke of Ed according to their personal needs and abilities.
About the Award

The Award is a leading structured (non-formal education) youth development program, empowering all young Australians aged 14 to 25 to explore their full potential regardless of their location or circumstance. The Award is a fully inclusive program and has no social, political, or religious affiliations.

How is an Award Achieved?

To earn an Award, each young person must learn a skill, improve their physical well being, volunteer in their community and experience a team adventure in a new environment. All Participants are supported by a network of adult Award Leaders, Assessors, Supervisors, and mentors.


The key elements of our program are:
  • Open to all between the ages of 14 to 25.
  • Three levels: Bronze, Silver, and Gold, each progressively more challenging.
  • Four Sections: Physical Recreation, Skill, Service, Adventurous Journey plus Residential Project (Gold Level only).
  • Achieving an Award recognises individual goal setting and self-improvement through persistence and achievement.

Time requirements:
  • Bronze – minimum 6 months
  • Silver – minimum 6 months if completed Bronze otherwise 12 months for direct entrants
  • Gold – minimum 12 months if completed Silver otherwise 18 months for direct entrants

What impact does the Award have on a young person?

Through this challenging journey of self-discovery, our Participants:

  • Are equipped and empowered to achieve their personal best;
  • Learn to take responsibility for their goals and choices;
  • Become connected to and actively engaged within their immediate community;
  • Make a real difference to society through their positive contributions and involvement;
  • Learn to persevere and overcome barriers to success;
  • Learn important life skills; and
  • Increase their career opportunities.

The Fundamentals of the Award
  • Regular participation in activities is required to meet the time requirements of each Award Section and Level.
  • Focuses on capacity building by encouraging all young Australians to make independent decisions and to negotiate priorities through participation.
  • Provides a framework that works with all young people in any conceivable situation. This includes youth at risk, Indigenous youth, new refugees, marginalised youth, young people in regional and remote communities, and young people with disabilities.
  • Assists with the provision of social infrastructure in the community and draws together and connects people, institutions and generations with the common purpose of youth development and inclusion.

A longstanding global network

Today more than 140 countries have adopted The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award program with over 8 million young people having participated worldwide.  Locally over 700,000 young people have completed the Award in Australia in the past 58 years, with on average 40,000 very diverse participants annually working towards achieving an Award.

About_the_award_snapshot Text courtesy of The Duke Of Edinburgh’s International Award – Australia