Held in The Garden Lobby, the Scottish Parliament Reception was sponsored by Jenny Gilruth MSP. Getting the evening underway, Gilruth stressed the impact of youth awards on young people before giving way to our own Emmie Main as host for the evening.
During her keynote speech on The contribution of youth awards to achieving CfE, SAC and DYW goals, Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP, Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science noted, “80—85% of young people's learning takes place out with the classroom,” and that, “there’s a huge amount to celebrate with our young people.”
The strong case for youth awards was further championed by young awards recipients who shared inspirational stories of how youth awards had impacted their lives in positive ways, including Courtney May Letham, a recipient of a Youth Achievement Award and Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Summing up her own experience neatly, Courtney said, “I’ve become a better version of myself.”
Representation from education was equally enthusiastic from Leith Academy and Tynecastle High School. Mike Irving, Head Teacher at Leith Academy, talked about the part that wider achievement and youth awards played in all aspects of education, saying, “It has a lot to do with young people feeling valued for their achievements.”
Awards Aware scheme
The Awards Aware scheme has been designed to raise the awareness of youth awards and demonstrate the value that wider achievement and non-formal learning gives to young people.
Organisations can sign up to become Awards Aware on the Awards Network website, by declaring they agree to a core set of principles. Once registered, organisations and individuals are awarded a certificate to display that they are Awards Aware.
Youth Scotland’s Awards
As a founding member of the Awards Network, Youth Scotland was proud to be part of the launch of Awards Aware and share in the celebration of Scotland’s amazing young people.
You can hear more about how young people feel about our awards in our recent case studies.