Our Youth Awards are industry-approved programmes that foster connections between schools and employers, and build work-ready skills for young people.

Whether your students want to explore possibilities for the future, or simply push themselves and take on a new challenge, they can do this with a Skills Active Youth Award, while gaining recognised credits that count towards their secondary education.

A sport or recreation qualification teaches perseverance and teamwork and helps to build well-rounded students.

How it works

Gaining consent to assess

First things first - you need to get consent to assess the relevant unit standards, if you don’t already hold it. Once this is approved, you can fill out a Youth Awards resource order form and we will send you the material. 

Delivery and assessment

Your school will deliver the programme and assess your students using our resources. 

Reporting credits 

The final step in the process is for the school to report the credits to NZQA.

Programmes available

Growing Coaches PLUS

Growing Coaches PLUS recognises students with the skills needed to coach sport at a beginner level.

Tramping and Camping

Tramping and Camping introduces students to a positive, safe and enjoyable outdoor tramping and camping experience.

Rec Leader

Rec Leader introduces students to the recreation industry through researching, planning and running a recreation activity.

Why do it?

There are lots of benefits for schools who offer Youth Awards to their students:

  • These industry-developed programmes target skills and attributes that are sought-after by employers
  • Credits can be used towards NCEA Level 1, 2 or 3 and Vocational Pathways awards
  • The unit standard credits achieved can be used towards workplace-based qualifications
  • The unit standards can be delivered in a variety of ways, including outside of school hours.

The Youth Awards scheme has three levels

Experience and participation

Experience awards  are designed for year 11/12 students participating in sport and recreation activities.

In order to run the programme, schools can use their existing consent to assess, or apply for a letter of support for the relevant unit standards.


These awards are designed for Year 12/13 students. They are aimed at students moving into leadership roles in delivering or overseeing recreation and sport within their school or community. 

Course materials can be aligned to Vocational Pathways and NCEA Levels 1, 2 and 3.

In order to run the programme, schools can use their existing consent to assess, or apply to us for a letter of support for the relevant unit standards.

Work experience

These awards are designed for Year 13 students. They are aimed at students planning to enter the sport and recreation industry, who wish to spend time in a workplace to gain experience. Participants may be able to achieve a New Zealand Certificate.

These programmes may be run in partnership between schools, workplaces and Skills Active, using a “3 + 2” model.

Ask us anything

If you've got any questions regarding  our awards or the consent to assess process, check out our page on this, or get in touch with the Quality Solutions team via quality@skillsactive.org.nz. 



Forms and documents