Awards Network for Parents
Young people have the right to be successful. Parents and carers have a responsibility to make a positive difference by supporting and encouraging young people to reach their potential. Learning outside of school, such as through youth work awards, is as important as formal learning.
The development, learning and experiences that young people gain in youth work situations… can have a positive impact which is lifelong…(providing) young people developmental opportunities as well as the ability to lead, take responsibility, make decisions…
– National Youth Work Strategy 2014 – 2019, YouthLink Scotland, 2014
The Awards Network is a forum of providers of non-formal learning awards across Scotland. We work together to promote and recognise the achievements of young people through youth work awards. We value young people’s voluntary effort to develop their own skills and improve the communities around them.
Young people achieve awards across all areas of our community, from youth clubs and uniformed organisations to schools and outdoor spaces, care work and campaigns. These can be local, national and international. Awards can be supported by paid staff and by volunteers, and can be self-guided by the young people themselves. They can lead to credit-rated qualifications; nationally recognised programme awards; or nominated awards that celebrate exceptional achievements.
Why is it important to recognise young people’s achievements?
Young people value awards programmes for fun, friendship, challenge, new skills and experiences that look great on a CV. Many young people want to engage in their communities and improve the quality of life for people around them. Personal reward is not the motivator, but the possibility of using their experience towards a recognised Award and as a way of strengthening their CV and enhancing their career prospects can be a real bonus.
All children and young people are entitled to have the full range of their achievements recognised and to be supported in reflecting and building on their learning and Achievements.
– Building the Curriculum 5 – a framework for assessment: recognising achievement, profiling, reporting, Scottish Government. 12/2010
The Curriculum for Excellence requires schools to recognise the breadth of young people’s achievement, to include achievements gained outside of school through e.g. youth work, volunteering and hobbies, and not simply their ability to pass exams. This means that there is a growing role for community activities to support and complement school based learning.
Business is clear – we need an education system which develops rigorous, rounded and grounded young people. This means a system which focuses as much on the development of key attitudes and attributes – such as confidence, resilience, enterprise, ambition – as on academic progression and attainment.
– Delivering Excellence – an approach for schools in Scotland, CBI, 3/2015
Any job requires a set of technical skills, but employees also need a range of ‘soft skills’. Employers increasingly recognise how youth work awards help young people develop these ‘soft skills’, and consequently make them more valuable as employees in the workplace.