Awards and programmes can make all the difference to individuals and communities. Recognising efforts, structuring otherwise daunting projects and taking part in something familiar can really give a morale boost, inspire us to go that bit further in exploring our relationship with God, and going on to create effective change in our communities.
This page collects a variety of different schemes you can get involved in. They are different and complimentary to each other.
In 2016 CYMFed (the Catholic Youth Ministers Federation) launched the Faith in Action Award scheme.
The CYMFed Faith in Action Award rewards young people’s active service in helping to build the Kingdom of God on Earth.
Many young people are doing so much to follow Jesus’ example in serving others in their schools and parishes.
The Faith in Action Award encourages young people to take that service into their wider community and accept greater responsibility for their faith in action.
The programme facilitates an exploration of scripture and Church teaching, with an emphasis on translating this into action. It encourages young people to shine the light of faith upon their experience of service through guided and personal reflection.
The award fits neatly into the ethics of Journey to 2030.
Many young people are keen to be agents of change in how we live in our world and live alongside our brothers and sisters also sharing this world.
The award, though, can help direct those young people to think about their actions through the lens of faith: considering that how we act in regard to care for the world can be informed by scripture and church teaching.
Through participation in the guided reflection points that are necessary to complete the award they will see that any actions they take through the year can be reinforced through their faith and come to understand that a lived faith can be a great way to respond to the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor.
For Primary, Secondary Schools and Colleges
The LiveSimply award is an opportunity for your school community to respond to the Catholic Church’s call to live simply, sustainably, and in solidarity with the world’s poorest. In response to Laudato Si‘, the award enables schools to undertake an exciting and transformational journey of putting Catholic Social Teaching into action. Inspired by faith and informed by learning, pupils will understand why they are taking meaningful action.
For Primary and Secondary School age groups.
The Oscar Romero Award recognises and aids in developing a school’s commitment to Catholic Social Teaching. The Award is available at three levels; Participator, Developer and Innovator.
To gain the Award, the school must demonstrate ways in which it is putting into practice the three strands
Catholic Social Teaching is at the heart of the decision making bodies of the school, guides its vision and has a direct impact on the culture of the school. Its guidance inspires and supports the school community to reflect upon their role within the wider community. It empowers staff and students/pupils to live a life of evangelisation.
students/pupils actively learn about Catholic Social Teaching in their lessons across the curriculum so that they can gain a holistic understanding of the mission of the Church to enable all people to live life to the full. The values of integrity and respect allow study in its fullest sense, encouraging students/pupils to connect with issues of social justice and enable them to recognise the practical steps needed to respond appropriately.
in faith and action, the whole school community celebrates its dedication to living in solidarity with the poor, and so make a lasting commitment to the common good that ensures all people’s human rights are respected and can live life to the full.
For Ages 10-18
School, Parish, Wider Community
The CYMFed Faith in Action Award rewards young people’s active service in helping to build the Kingdom of God on Earth.The programme facilitates an exploration of scripture and Church teaching, with an emphasis on translating this into action.The Faith in Action Award encourages young people to take that service into their wider community and accept greater responsibility for their faith in action.
There are four levels of award: Pin, Bronze, Silver and Gold. Participants accrue credits of service in their parish and / or school and the wider community. The Faith in Action Award builds on what young people already experience in serving others, asking them to reflect upon it so that they may find new ways of living out and exploring their faith. There is an opportunity for both guided reflections, through group reflection points and personal reflection, through journaling. At the end of the scheme, participants submit a final piece of work for moderation before being awarded their Faith in Action Award.
For Ages 16-18
The Award is committed to helping young people enhance their spiritual, physical, emotional and social development through participation in school, parish and community activities. As well as the feeling of personal achievement that a participant will gain from taking part in the Award, participation will help demonstrate the young person’s commitment to a task and goal.
The award is run by a diocese. To find if your diocese runs the award, or you are interested in running it in your diocese you can find out more on this link: https://thepopejohnpauliiaward.com/participating-diocese/
For Ages 14-18
B-Attitude is a programme of the St. Vincent de Paul Society for young people who turn their faith into action through service to the disadvantaged, vulnerable and marginalised of society.
For Ages 7-11
Mini Vinnies are 7 to 11 year olds based in schools and parishes across England and Wales, and in several other countries across the world. They come together to form a part of the St. Vincent de Paul Society England and Wales, a voluntary organisation dedicated to tackling poverty in all its forms. Mini Vinnies meet to pray, discuss and support however they can to help make a difference in their communities.
For Parish communities
The LiveSimply award is earned by communities and schools who can show how they have been living:
Nominate young people between the ages of 11-25
In every school, parish and local community young people are continually making our communities and our world a better place. To highlight these amazing individuals, Million Minutes celebrate young people both locally and nationally year round, Plus every 18 months they put on the national Celebrating Young People Awards. Nominated by friends and family, teachers and clergy, award recipients are drawn from throughout England and Wales and reflect achievements in every area of social action.
Open to young people between the ages of 13-18
A yearly competition run by the Columban Missionaries, looking for students to submit an original piece of writing or an original image. The theme changes each year, and will be on the subject of inequality, injustice, exclusion and environmental degradation. The latest winners can be seen here:
Sign up to the Columbans mailing list for alerts to the next chance to enter.
Like Eurovision, but all the songs are on a central theme… Vocation.Why not share your thoughts and ideas about your own life’s journey and calling through the lyrics and music of a song that may help others on their own journey.
The Laudato Si’ Action Platform offers enrollment for a range of settings. Its unique selling point is the ability to track your progress in ecological actions to help build a global picture of the Church’s efforts.
Learn more about Laudato Si’ with this online leadership development course. Learn alongside people from around the world.
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