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Scouts Of The World Award


Scouts of the World Award (SOWA) is a Scout Network only award that gives Scout Network members the chance to undertake a project of their choice within the themes of Peace, Environment and Sustainability and take action on their chosen issue.

Through your Scouts of the World Award journey, youíll develop skills and knowledge that will empower you to undertake a project that will make a sustainable impact on your local, national or international community, while developing your personal skills.

Youíll learn skills including independence, team work, project planning, time management and communication skills, while gaining an understanding for global issues and international relations. You donít have to go abroad to complete your Scouts of the World Award. Local and national projects are acceptable, as long as all requirements of the award are being met. 

Requirements of the Scouts of the World Award

To take part, you must

  • be between 18-25 years old and a member of the Scout Network section
  • attend a Scouts of the World Discovery (14 hours) run by a SOWA Trainer
  • register for the Award by filling out this registration form after you have attended a Discovery
  • create a plan for your SOWA project based on one or more of the three themes (Peace, Environment and Sustainable Development) with the guidance of your mentor
  • complete your SOWA voluntary project (80 hours) based on one or more of the three themes (Peace, Environment and Sustainable Development)
  • undertake an evaluation, personal reflection and local presentation (three hours) which should reflect your personal development, the project deliverables and how you have ensured the project is sustainable

Your mentor will be able to offer you guidance throughout your award. 

After your presentation, your Assistant County Commissioner (Scout Network) (ACC(SN)) will confirm that the award has been completed and notify HQ via this completion form.

Scouts of the World Award minimum standards and criteria

The outcome of SOWA for the participant is

  • to play an active role as a global citizen in society
  • to advance on their personal development journey
  • to increase their understanding of global issues

Discovery (14 hours)

  • a SOWA Discovery event may take place as a residential event or a number of shorter events but should be a minimum of 14 hours of learning
  • all participants should undertake some pre-course activities that will be sent to them by the SOWA Trainers prior to the event
  • the Discovery will broaden the participants understanding of the wider global context that underpins the Award and global issues.

Voluntary project (80 hours)

  • a SOWA project must take a minimum of 80 hours, which can also include planning time
  • the project should be based on one or more of the three key themes of the Award (Peace, Environment and Sustainable Development)
  • an assigned SOWA mentor will guide the participant through their project, including the planning stages
  • ACC (SN) or equivalent should be notified about the project, as they are the final sign off for the Award
  • the project should follow the SMART technique, with clear project objectives, timescales and realistic deliverables
  • the project should have a long-term, sustainable impact on the local, national or international communities

Presentation, evaluation and personal reflection (three hours)

  • Participants should spend time evaluating their journey through the Award, as well as the project itself. The Award is not just about meeting the project aims but is also about the development of the skills, cultural awareness, knowledge and attitudes of the participants, as active global citizens. This evaluation may cover questions such as:
  • Can I see the connection back to the global context I learnt about at the Discovery Weekend?
  • How is my project sustainable? If it is not, what could I do to ensure it is?
  • What challenges did I face and how did I overcome these?
  • What skills have I gained from achieving this award?
  • What does it mean to be an active global citizen?
  • Participants should present their project and evaluation to a relevant audience. This could include the ACC (SN), who has final sign off of the award, as well as Scout Network members, Explorer Scouts, ACC (International), their SOWA Mentor and their SOWA Trainer.

Additional information

Award standards
The Scouts of the World Award is based on personal best effort rather than fixed standards, and should be available to all members of Scout Network. This may mean that for some individuals, the requirements of the award need to be adapted to ensure that they face the same degree of challenge as other participants. Where additional needs have to be taken into account, it is acceptable to adjust some of the activities to make them more accessible. You should work with your mentor to discuss any adaptations, and make sure that any adaptations have been approved by the ACC (SN) who will sign off your award. As every set of individual circumstances will be different, it is left to the discretion of the ACC (SN).

The award must be completed by your 25th birthday and cannot be started before your 18th birthday. Within that, there are no fixed timescales.
The number of hours specified above for the Discovery, Voluntary Project and Evaluation does not need to be completed in one go. For example, you may choose to do a voluntary project for one hour a week over 80 weeks.