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Ensuring the Award Journey is accessible to all New Zealanders is an essential and non-negotiable focus of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award. We are so proud of all our participants and deeply inspired by the Award Leaders who support them to achieve their goals.

So, what exactly does an Award Leader do?

Award Leaders help our rangatahi to choose suitable Award activities, encourage them to persevere with those activities and then celebrate their achievements when they cross the finish line. Put simply, they are the backbone of our community and are there for our participants every step of the way.

Today, we are celebrating two of our extra special Award Leaders, who support people living with disabilities in our Award whānau.

Siouxsie – WaiCol Supported Learning Centre
Siouxsie runs the Award at the Supported Learning Centre at WaiCol. In 2020, she supported an entire class of students through their Bronze Award and is now helping them through their Silver Journey. By working closely with the participants, Siouxsie and the WaiCol Support Team are learning more about different disabilities and abilities within their class which is also enabling the Award team to ensure the Award is accessible to every young New Zealander.

In reflection of her Award Leader experience, Siouxsie says, “I have thoroughly loved taking the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award class these last two years and was so proud to see them go on the stage in front of the whole school to receive their awards. I got so many comments from wider-school teachers on how wonderful it is that our guys are given this opportunity and achieving it.”

Click here to read about Wairarapa College’s recent Social Impact Award for their project “Aroha Cookies.”  -


Marty – Muscular Dystrophy New Zealand

Marty is a dedicated Award Leader and a recent nominee for the Kiwibank New Zealand Local Hero of the Year Award. After receiving his, Marty told the Nelson App, “it was totally unexpected.” However, this kind of national recognition is no surprise to the Award team who have watched Marty change the lives of countless young people living with Muscular Dystrophy.

Marty helps to plan Adventurous Journeys for his participants and goes on the adventure with them! His most recent trip to One Tree Hill was a trip full of fun, dynamic activities and an experience we’re sure his participants will treasure.

Click here to read about Marty’s recent nomination -

To Siouxsie, Marty and all the other incredible Award Leaders working to support those living with disabilities – Ka Pai. Our Award community is so lucky to have your passion and enthusiasm.


International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2021

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