HRH joins local leaders in USA to engage with young people through life skills development

The Duke of Edinburgh undertook a working visit to the United States of America and Canada, last week. The trip was the Duke’s first overseas visit in support of the International Award since being named Patron of the charity last month.

The Duke has supported the work of the International Award since 2006 and has championed the potential of young people all over the world for many years, celebrating their achievements and thanking the volunteers for supporting young people as they make a difference in their communities.

In Washington, the Duke had various engagements with World Bank and USAID on behalf of the Foundation, which partners with organisations and governing bodies globally to ensure as many young people can benefit from the opportunities of the Award. HRH met international partners, and business and philanthropic leadership, to support the growth and success of the Award in the DC metro area, and in the USA nationally. 


HRH with USAID Administrator, Samantha Power

Today’s young people are facing extraordinary challenges and change. Founded nearly 70 years ago, The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award equips young people with the skills and confidence needed to adapt and thrive in an ever-changing world. The programme encourages young people to improve their mental and physical health, give back to their communities, and find their purpose, passion, and place in the world. The Award is a globally recognised accreditation and Award holders join a prestigious global alumni network when they complete the programme.

Reaching more young people across the USA

This past week a gathering of local leaders with The Duke of Edinburgh International Award USA (Award USA) focused on how to expand the Award in the DC metro, Virginia, and Maryland regions as it announced that it is expanding its availability to more young people across the USA.

We are excited to grow the availability of the Award in the DC metro area.  As always, we are working to be sure the cost to participate and undertake activities is not a barrier as the Award is open to all young people inclusive of their background, circumstances, and self-defined interests, shared CEO, Buffy Higgins-Beard.


HRH The Duke of Edinburgh at Morven Park, Virginia

Loudoun County Virginia’s Morven Park was the location for a recent gathering of philanthropists determined to assist young people’s wellbeing, civic engagement, and sense of potential. Exploring how the framework of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award can impactfully increase confidence, community connectedness though service, health, and leadership skills for all young people, the event highlighted the synergy between the Award’s aims and Morven Park’s Center for Civic Impact.   Morven Park strives to empower young people so that they can impact the world around them and have their voice heard.

We were honored to host HRH and the members of  The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award, USA in Morven Park,” shared Stacey Metcalfe Executive Director to Morven Park. “Their mission resonates deeply with our Morven Park Center for Civic Impact’s goal of empowering children to find a confident voice that will inform the actions of engaged and motivated citizens. We are inspired by the long-term commitment to young people around the globe exemplified by The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.

The event was hosted by Lara and Eric Major who, together with HRH were joined by US Chair to the Award USA, Ryan Ruskin and CEO of the Award USA, Buffy Higgins-Beard as well as Executive Director to Morven Park Stacey Metcalfe along with fourteen other guests.

A Gold Award holder himself,  Prince Edward is Patron and Chairman of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Foundation and has previously Chaired the International Council covering 130 countries and territories for 17 years. Prince Edward continues the legacy of his father Prince Philip, who founded the Award, and His Royal Highness was named The Duke of Edinburgh by King Charles III earlier this year.

To find out more about the Award in the United States, please visit To find out more about Morven Park please visit


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For more information, case studies or Award content in the United States, contact Lisa Metzger-Mugg, Phone (773) 209-5958, email [email protected]

Note to Editors

The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award – USA

  • The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is a global, non-formal education framework which challenges young people to develop new skills, get physically active, learn about teamwork and leadership through adventurous journey and volunteer within their communities.
  • It is the world’s leading youth achievement award, equipping young people for life. With a proven framework operating in more than 130 countries and territories around the world, the Award is available for all young people ages 14 to 24, inclusive of their background, culture, physical ability, skills and interests.
  • It is a fully inclusive program and has no social, political or religious affiliations. Over half of US involved Award participants report they are from a marginalized race, ethnicity, or ability status. In 2022, one in five of US Award participants reported living with low income.
  • Its US division, now in its sixth year, was established in 2016 and operates as an independent 501(c)3 charity based nationally in Chicago. Inspirational stories of the infinite potential of Award USA participants can be found in this video series
  • Currently the Award is offered locally in Maryland at Holton Arms School, in Virginia through the Boy Scouts of Tidewater Boy Scout Council and in DC at the British International School of DC. Young people without an Award Center nearby can also participate through the Open Award Center virtually.
  • As today’s young people face the unprecedented challenges from COVID-19 and beyond, as well as calls to address racial injustice, the Award is dedicated to ensuring that young people will have what they need for the future: to benefit from great non-formal education and learning.
  • The Award is led by HRH The Prince Edward, Duke of Edinburgh who serves as the global Chairman to the international Board of Trustees.  It was founded by HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in 1956, in conjunction with German educationalist Kurt Hahn and Lord Hunt.
  • There are currently more than a million young people completing their own unique Award program, via hundreds of thousands of youth-focused partners and operators, including schools, after school youth organizations, faith-based organizations and juvenile justice involved institutions.
  • For more information on the impact of the Award, including recent social value analysis, please visit here.
  • National and international case studies, imagery and additional video content are available on request. More information on the global Award can be found at

Morven Park

  • Morven Park is a 1,000 acre historic estate located at Leesburg, Virginia.