What you need to know:
- The President’s Award has played a great role in equipping thousands of young people with life skills.
- More than 800,000 people have participated in the programme since its inception in1966.
Prince Philip inspired millions of young people worldwide to dream big and make a difference to their communities. He did this through the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, which was launched in 1956 and it’s in more than 130 countries.
In Kenya, it’s known as The President’s Award and has continued to positively impact the lives of young people by helping them to find their purpose, passion and place in the world.
Every young person aged 14 – 24 has an opportunity to participate in the programme, whose aim is to make them responsible citizens. The award has played a great role in equipping thousands of young people with life skills. More than 800,000 people have participated in the programme since its inception in1966.
As a champion of non-formal education, the award presents a learning framework through which the youth’s achievements outside of academia are recognised and celebrated.
Its catchment population is in secondary schools, colleges, universities, faith-based organisations and correctional facilities. It equips them with ‘soft’ skills such as resilience, adaptability, creativity, problem-solving, decision-making and communication. They are advantaged by being better placed to manage life after school.
Positive life outcomes
Development of these skills has supported the achievement of long-term positive life outcomes, including educational attainment, employment, mental health and well-being.
There has been transformation and character change has been witnessed in various correctional centres where the award is run. A number of participants have been released before their time, following positive behaviour and good conduct. A reduction in re-offending rates has also been observed.
Prince Philip’s legacy has never been as relevant as it is now. It has never been more important to equip young people with the skills to discover their true potential.
On an individual level, this can make a transformational difference to a young person’s life. On a collective basis, it can bring change to the society. We celebrate the Duke of Edinburgh’s impact on the youth. His legacy lives on.
Ms Munala is chief executive, The President’s Award