Case Studies

Reduced Re-Offending

I would like to see change in our society. We need to transform our communities and to have less crime. The President’s Award can break the cycle of crime in communities by creating opportunities for youth to be engaged in positive activities like sport, service, adventure and skills development which can change their lives. If it changed me, in prison, I know it can change young people in the community as well.
Monwabisi Nteyiya – Gold Award Holder
I have been doing the Award for the past three years. I am part of change, I am part of empowerment, I am part of innovation and I am part of social justice. This initiative brings us as inmates and the community together to make a change; during my adventurous journey where we cycled 240 kilometres, we spoke to youth and children from different communities about the dangers of crime
Awande Mshotana – Worcester Correctional Center
I have the privilege of working with young offenders that are coming from challenging backgrounds; I am committed to rehabilitating them through the Award programme, enabling them to see life in a different light and assist them in making informed decisions
IK Swart – Robertson Correctional Centre Official and President’s Award Leader
Perushka Govender – Bronze and Silver Award Holder, Danville

Improved Environmental Impact

The Award means a great deal to me because it has taught me things that most people only learn much later in life. It has prepared me for many challenges to come in my adulthood. The values I learnt while doing the Award and still live by are leadership, appreciation of community and self-belief. My number one goal/purpose is to make a positive difference in the world. I want to fight for human rights and the environment. I dream of being an author and motivational speaker. I want to empower youth across the globe. I have been an active, committed member of a nearby baby home. I am a member of the Durban’s chapter for Amnesty International and Durban’s Anonymous for the Voiceless. South Africa has a lot of potential. My vision is that we introduce new laws/policies that work towards SA becoming more eco-friendly. The domestic violence rates and crime overall needs to be reduced drastically. Women need to feel safe in this country.
Mia Martheze – Bronze and Silver Award Holder, King David Victory Park

Increased Participation in Civic Life

While doing the Award, I learned that hard work and determination can get you through anything and never give up when things seem tough. I have scoliosis so I found the Adventurous Journeys challenging and I found balancing schoolwork, the President’s Award, and social life difficult. Through the Award, I have found my passion for outreach, making lifelong friends and the achievements of completing each level. I have become so passionate about outreach I have done many more hours of community service than required. I have held fundraisers at my school and in my personal capacity. My dream for South Africa is that people become more united and that there is more equality and opportunity for everyone.
Miga Van Der Nest

Improved Educational Attainment

My mother always says that “Life is about choices”. Nearing the end of my high school career I started to understand her quote better. After having made the decision & choosing to study Medicine after school, my goals became clearer. After having done some research on the Presidents Award, I quickly saw that the Award is everything I believe in & strive for – giving back & investing into communities (and essentially myself as well ). Seeing Africa’s people suffer on news channels & in articles made me more determined to become a doctor. I chose to work harder for people who cannot help themselves & that is why I enrolled in the programme. The added bonus was that the hours I spent on the award were able to count for my community service hours for the applications to various Medical schools. The rest of the award was an investment for me, as I learned so much about myself, other communities & ethnic groups and time management. Planning the adventurous journey was a daring task, but with my organisational skills I luckily managed to organise a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ trip. Doing the Presidents Award definitely opened my eyes to the needs and terrible circumstances that many South Africans live in. It showed me once again how fortunate I am to have everything that I do & most importantly: It taught me that you can never be too busy to not learn a new skill. I was able to click ‘Yes’ on the Presidents Award box on my medical schools applications and I honestly believe that made the difference. Universities know about the Award & respect it, because they know that Award holders have invested into their communities & are hard working individuals. Doing the Presidents Award definitely helped me to get accepted at 6 different Medical schools in SA.
Frans Maluleke – Bronze and Silver Award Holder


I come from a family of 4 children, with me as the eldest child and together with my parents we all live in a three-roomed RDP house. My father was a factory worker (well at least, few months ago before the COVID-19 pandemic started) who is currently unemployed while my mother is also unemployed and as such, society outlines my family as “POOR”. However, due to the character that has been built in me through The President’s Award, I managed I come from a family of 4 children, with me as the eldest child to pass grade 12 with 6 distinctions. I am currently a 3rd year student at the University of the WITWATERSRAND, studying towards a Bachelor of Accounting Science Degree, and the first person in my entire family to do and finish matric. Let alone going to university. I am of the notion that even though the rest of my family may have missed the opportunity to go to university, but they empowered me to do it and I believe that many more will follow. This goes to show that even though we may not be financially strong (as of) yet, we are definitely not “POOR’’ as outlined by society because we do not Pass Over Opportunities Repeatedly, but a family of empowerment. Throughout my childhood, I saw and heard of people who were less fortunate than I was, there were many of them for that matter. Essentially, most of them did not use their background or situation as an excuse not to be empowered and taste success in life, instead they worked hard, to get what they want. This has inspired me and ensured that I understand why I should value the little that I have, because others have far less. Today, I am a passenger driven by purpose in a taxi full of hope, which keeps on moving across parts of this world, trust me when I say this taxi just keeps on moving. Due to my involvement in the Award, I have had the privilege of speaking at prestigious events in front of prominent members of society such as HRH The Earl of Wessex, MEC Panyaza Lesufi, The President’s Award Trustees, Business Executives, to name just a few. As the Chairman of the ABASA WITS Student Chapter, in 2019, I managed to get the ABASA WITS Student Chapter to get its 190 members involved in the Award Programme.
Amy Naude

Improved Physical Health and Fitness

I decided to sign up for the Silver Level this year because I had a blast last year with the Bronze Level. I discovered so much about myself and about others around me. My highlight of the bronze level was definitely the Adventurous Journey. I made so many new friends with other students in my school. We were really tested… not only with the hike but with the weather conditions. When I look back now I have a good laugh and it will be apart of my fond memories that I will cherish forever. My highlight of the silver level so far has been helping “Ashton Families Who Care in Conjunction with Kwa Dukuza Municipality Disaster Management” for my community service. It is completely and utterly incredible to be apart of something so much bigger than yourself. The amount of food parcels we have packed is jaw-dropping. I love the warm feeling you get inside when you take time out of your busy school day to help others in need. I have learned to push myself in other areas besides school and athletics. Learning a new skill adds to what I call your “toolbox” of things that will help you in the future. It also teachers you patience as you will not attain the skill right away. It takes time and practise. I have also discovered the feeling you get when you help your community. It is something that is so hard to explain… all I can say is it puts a smile not only on your face but on someone else’s. I have also learnt to not underestimate myself. Last year when I was considering signing up, I was very conflicted as I thought I would not have time to do the Award. However, I took the chance and I managed to do it! I was completely shocked when I finished the Bronze Level. Sometimes you have to take the chance and tackle it head on. I would recommend the Presidents Award to everyone. I have grown so much and it has opened my eyes. I am so glad I decided to do it. This is something that I will keep with me forever. My vision for South Africa is that poverty and crime will come to an end.

Get Involved

The Award is available to all 14-24 year olds and is the world’s leading youth achievement award. It equips young people for life regardless of their background, culture, physical ability, skills and interests. Doing the Award is a personal challenge and not a competition against others; it pushes young people to their personal limits and recognises their achievements.