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Serving Young People

About The Awards Network

The Awards Network was established in Scotland in 2008 as a forum of providers of non-formal learning opportunities for young people, recognised by youth work awards. Its members work together to raise awareness of the range and impact of awards accrediting learning and achievements of young people aged 10 to 25. It recognises awards that use youth work approaches and are available throughout Scotland.

The origins of the Awards Network lie in a Volunteering Action Plan arising from Scotland’s first National Youth Work Strategy, 2007 – 2010. With many youth work organisations including volunteering activity by young people within their programme as an award element and / or as a vehicle for learning, a number of organisations coalesced around a Volunteer Action Plan agenda on “Training and Development of Young People as Volunteers”.

The formation of the Awards Network was a logical extension of this common interest, providing a vehicle for collaboration to raise awareness of #youthawards and to promote the benefits of such non-formal learning awards alongside formal education qualifications.

The Awards Network published Amazing Things in 2008, a guide to youth work awards available in Scotland. Now in its fourth edition, and supplemented by the Awards Network’s website, Amazing Things has helped to foster greater recognition amongst educators, employers and young people themselves, of the value of youth work awards and their wider impact on young people’s learning, skills and personal development.

Our Purpose

To promote awareness of youth awards and grow access to the opportunities they provide for recognition of young people’s learning and achievement

The Awards Network brings together eligible organisations in Scotland to:

  • Develop awareness of #youthawards and promote related achievement opportunities to youth workers, other educators and young people themselves to encourage participation and improve access
  • Promote information about the content, benefit and connections between Awards to prospective employers, education establishments, other stakeholders and the wider public
  • Share information, skills and good practice in appropriate areas
  • Conduct any other partnership project or activity which develops or promotes access to individual non-formal learning youth awards in Scotland

Our Members

Amongst the Awards Network’ Full Members are the largest universal youth work organisations in Scotland, targeted youth work organisations with a national presence; and other niche award providers delivering through a youth work approach across Scotland.

Associate Members include organisations building the presence and availability of (chiefly) more recently launched awards.

Affiliate Members provide non-formal learning programmes that do not fully meet our core membership criteria, but offer beneficial association to further the Purpose and Vision of the Awards Network. 

A number of national bodies that support the Purpose of the Awards Network and play a critical role in relevant policy and practice are recognised as Strategic Partners.

More information on membership eligibility criteria and how to JOIN the Awards Network can be found HERE

Our Vision

Young people’s non-formal learning youth awards are nationally recognised and equitably valued with formal learning qualifications as evidence of attainment and achievement