The Foundation: Driving the Award globally

We at The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Foundation are the engine that drives and supports the Award’s growth, access and impact across the globe.

We are not limited by boundaries and are committed to making the Award available to 1% of the youth population by 2023, which is 7.9m young people. This represents a 600% growth on current participation numbers.

It is our long term ambition that every eligible young person aged 14 – 24 will have the opportunity to participate in the Award. Our vision is that 20% of them are from at risk and marginalised communities for whom the Award can be truly life-changing.

To enable us to reach as many young people as possible, we, The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Foundation, work in partnership with organisations and governing bodies across the world.

Our Award family comprises schools, youth groups, employers, custodial institutions, and other operators licensed by National Award Operators, who are, in turn, licensed by the Foundation. The Foundation also directly licenses some schools and organisations in countries where a National Award Operator does not exist.

We support our family to be able to grow and flourish by:

  • Advocating for the right socio-political climate for non-formal education and learning to thrive
  • Connecting with more young people by extending our network of volunteers, operators and digital support systems
  • Subsidising to ensure the Award is truly affordable for any individual, family or community organisation

We also work with many organisations globally to ensure young people have access to opportunities and resources to develop their skills and capabilities and bring about change in their own communities and countries.

As part of the ‘Big Six’ we work with the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, the World Organization of the Scout Movement, the Young Women’s Christian Association and the Young Men’s Christian Association. Collectively, we reach more than 100 million young people in over 200 countries and territories. Together we are unleashing the skills, enthusiasm and desire for young people to be a force for good wherever they live.

“If we all play our part in helping them to fulfil their potential, young people can and do rise to the challenge. Given the opportunity, they will discover there is more in them than they think. With the necessary skills and experiences, they will become resilient, adaptable, ready for change, ready for our new normal.” – HRH The Prince Edward, Duke of Edinburgh KG GCVO

The Award’s simple social franchise model means it can operate effectively in a wide range of different environments. And whilst the framework stays the same, each nation can ensure it is nationally and culturally relevant for the young people in their country.

We believe the Award framework can be a blueprint for investing in human capital, specifically strengthening resilience, improving employability and entrepreneurship, promoting global prosperity and helping the world’s most vulnerable. The Award does this through working in partnership with young people and their communities, supporting them in finding their own development solutions.