Success so far

In the first 18 months of the Award scheme more than 4,000 uniformed young people achieved awards, with recipients drawn from Cornwall, Devon and as far afield as Canada, Ghana and Hong Kong.

Two major multi-agency live exercises were held to give the youngsters the chance to demonstrate their newfound knowledge and to test the scheme in a practical way.

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In March 2012, young people from the Scouts, Guides, St John Ambulance, military and emergency services cadets, gathered at Predannack Airfield in Helston to test their response in a scenario based around flooding.

Young people saw how they could help get a community back to business as usual, learned how and when it was safe to assist and how the blue light services responded to such an incident.

They were joined by members of the police, Cornwall Council, the fire service, the Salvation Army and St John Ambulance, plus the Cornwall-based disaster relief charity Shelterbox.

Later in 2012 HRH Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall revisited Lostwithiel to see the young people in action at the second of the live exercises. The exercise centred on a number of homes hit by flooding and involved some of the local residents who were left devastated in 2010.

More than 40 young people took part along with local schoolchildren and residents, with the support of the police, fire service, county council, the British Red Cross and the Coastguard Agency among many others.

Scenarios included filling sandbags to protect the home of a vulnerable elderly woman, helping to evacuate residents from home, and helping to clear out ruined personal belongings.

In June 2012, the scheme was officially recognised at the highest level, receiving Cabinet approval and Royal Assent.

Nationally, the award has been adopted as a badge by Scouts and Guides and a certificate by cadet groups. Additionally schools, colleges, and individuals have now also taken the scheme into use. By 2018 more than 12,500 badges had been distributed in the UK.

More importantly the Local Resilience Forum has since seen very real examples of young people putting this knowledge into practice in live situations such as checking on elderly neighbours house-bound during adverse weather and helping their parents to prepare emergency plans at home.