The Peak Award

Using the mountain journey symbolism, the Peak Award represents the summit of the mountain. Not every Scout will aspire to reach the summit and that’s OK! For those who do, there will be a great deal of challenge involved.

The Peak Award for each age section is a big achievement for a Scout. It’s designed for individual Scouts who want to give a whole range of things a try and to experience a high number of personal challenges. Normally it’ll involve Scouts completing some challenges in their own time as well as being involved in the Unit program.

Specific requirements and record-keeping tools for each aspect of the Achievement Pathways can be found in each age section’s Youth Member Guide, which can be purchased from the Scout Shop, or your region store.

To achieve the Peak Award, there are three final requirements:

Adventurous Journey

Completed after the commencement of Milestone 3

Personal development or leadership course

Completed at any time, and should allow a Scout to put into practice some of the skills they have learnt during their time in the section.

personal reflection

Completed as the last step of the Peak Award









ADVENTUROUS JOURNEY

The Adventurous Journey is part of the Peak Award, but this doesn’t mean only those Scouts undertaking their Peak Award should undertake this challenge!

The Adventurous Journey should allow a Scout to put into practice some of the skills they have learnt during their time in the section.

The Scout should undertake their Adventurous Journey after the commencement of Milestone 3.

Scouts will go on their Adventurous Journey with other capable Scouts (especially those from the current and next age section) and be supported by adults to varying degrees (depending on the age section).

The Adventurous Journey should present a real adventure – something new and exciting that helps set the scene for the experiences to come in the program.

The Adventurous Journey requires Scouts to be challenged and to connect with nature and the outdoors. Journeys that simply involve travelling from one point to another aren’t considered to meet these requirements. Unsuitable examples include road trips, organised tours and overseas holidays.

The requirements for the Adventurous Journey are detailed in each section’s Youth Member Guide. In general, the following apply as requirements:

• The journey could take one of many different forms, it doesn’t necessarily need to be hiked.

• They journey should help the Scout connect with nature and the outdoors.

• The party size will be informed by the risk assessment.

• The Scout will be involved through the Plan>Do>Review> for the journey.

More than one Scout may be able to achieve their Adventurous Journey for the same route – it all depends on how much involvement they have in the planning and leading of the experience.

The Unit Council might consider:

• Is your Unit able to facilitate multiple different journeys happening at the same time? Are there enough youth members, adults and equipment available to appropriately support this?

• Who has a goal to achieve their Peak Award and how can we support them completing their Adventurous Journey?

• What is the previous experience of the youth members involved? How do we ensure the Scouts planning the journey are striving to do their best?

• What is the goal for the Adventurous Journey? Is the Journey meeting the minimum standards or is it a stretch? This includes considering the length (both distance and duration) and the difficulty of the route.

Scouting is about adventure, but it is also about friendship. Completing the Adventurous Journey with a friend may be a great learning experience, covering planning, collaboration, negotiation and team work.

The Unit Council may decide that some Adventurous Journeys are better planned in pairs, whilst others could be individual planning. It would be recommended that no more than two Scouts are planning any one route.

Remember, anyone who attends the journey might be able to receive a participate towards their Milestones, and skills could have been developed in the Outdoor Adventure Skills as well.





Personal development or leadership course

Undertaking a leadership or personal development course is part of the Peak Award. That considered… Leadership or personal development courses aren’t only for those Scouts doing their Peak Award.

All Scouts should be encouraged to take part in these opportunities as part of developing and exploring their leadership potentials!

The leadership or personal development course should allow a Scout to put into practice some of the skills they have learnt during their time in the section.

Scouts may choose to undertake a Scout course run for their section, a state or national extension course like You+Lead, or an external course like RYLA and RYPEN provided by Rotary Australia. Ideally, the course should cover most of the following:

• Problem-solving

• Communication

• Task management

• Leadership

• Planning

• Community involvement

The course should involve practical and experiential learning more than classroom-based learning.

The required length of this course will vary depending on the age section. Detail is included in the section’s record book.

After the course, Scouts should reflect on what they learned, and how parts of the course might apply to their path of leadership and personal development in Scouting.

Access & Inclusion

All Scouts are encouraged to undertake a leadership or personal development course that meets their individual needs. This could be a course run by Scouts or another organisation. Your branch of Scouts Australia should be able to support you in finding a course that suits the needs of each Scout.

If there are any concerns around the accessibility of a particular course for a Scout, the first point of call should be to contact the course organiser and discuss the options available. If required, your branch of Scouts Australia should be able to help in exploring accessibility options.

It may also be necessary to review and be flexible with specific section requirements as required, for example the minimum duration of the course.



personal reflection

The personal reflection will be the last step of the Peak Award, and should be supported by both adults and peers. Guidelines on this process are outlined in each age section’s Youth Member Guide.

The reflection isn’t about deciding whether the Scout does or doesn’t receive their award; this is about helping them to reflect on everything they’ve learned along the way and to celebrate their own achievement.

The reflection gives the Scout the opportunity to reflect on what was enjoyable and challenging, and what they developed and learnt through their involvement in the section and completion of the Peak Award.

The process should include reflection on key moments, choices made, activities completed, and how completing the Peak Award may have contributed to making the world a better place.

The Scout should take time to identify how the adventurous journey and/or leadership or personal development course pulled together their experiences in the section.

The reflection is a key stage in recognising the Scout’s achievements and how they’ve developed and grown.

In general, the personal reflection occurs with the Unit’s youth leaders, and in the younger sections will include an adult leader. More detail regarding who the personal reflection should occur with can be found in the relevant age section chapter of this handbook.

The Peak Awards

Requirements:


  • Complete Milestone 3 in the Program Essentials
  • Reach Stage 1 in the three core Outdoor Adventure Skills
  • Undertake six Special Interest Area projects, in at least two different areas, with each project being two hours long.
  • Undertake an adventurous journey
  • Reflect on their journey through the section and the award

Requirements:


  • Complete Milestone 3 in the Program Essentials
  • Reach Stage 3 in the three core Outdoor Adventure Skills, and achieve at least 8 progressions in total.
  • Undertake six Special Interest Area projects, in at least two different areas, with each project being at least four hours long.
  • Undertake an adventurous journey
  • Complete a leadership or personal development course
  • Reflect on their journey through the section and the award


Requirements:


  • Complete Milestone 3 in the Program Essentials
  • Reach Stage 5 in the three core Outdoor Adventure Skills, and achieve at least 10 progressions in total.
  • Undertake six Special Interest Area projects, in at least three different areas, with each project being at least eight hours long.
  • Undertake an adventurous journey
  • Complete a leadership or personal development course
  • Reflect on their journey through the section and the award


Requirements:


  • Complete Milestone 3 in the Program Essentials
  • Reach Stage 5 in the three core Outdoor Adventure Skills, and achieve at least 12 progressions in total.
  • Undertake six Special Interest Area projects, in at least three different areas, with each project being at least twelve hours long.
  • Undertake an adventurous journey
  • Complete a leadership or personal development course
  • Reflect on their journey through the section and the award


Requirements:


  • Complete Milestone 3 in the Program Essentials
  • Reach Stage 5 in the three core Outdoor Adventure Skills, and achieve at least 14 progressions in total.
  • Undertake six Special Interest Area projects, in at least four different areas, with each project being at least eighteen hours long.
  • Undertake an adventurous journey
  • Complete a leadership or personal development course
  • Reflect on their journey through the section and the award

Approval

The approval of all aspects of the Achievement Pathways, including the Peak Award, is completed by the Unit leadership team or Unit Council. The Unit leadership team is an intergenerational team comprised of youth and adults working together.

It’s the responsibility of the Unit leadership to support the Scout through their personal progression, to challenge them to achieve their best, and ultimately to develop as an individual.

Part of this responsibility is in getting to know the Scout, and the extent of their capabilities.

Communication is key in this process; the Unit leadership should make sure the Scout is supported through the process of Plan>Do>Review> at each stage of their progression.

Some aspects of the Achievement Pathways require a certain level of expertise – the best example of this is the Outdoor Adventure Skills. For these aspects, the confirmation of achievement may need to be noted by a subject matter expert or mentor, as per the relevant aspect of the Achievement Pathways.

Once the Unit Council or leadership team has approved completion of a Peak Award, they will use their local process for the completion to be noted by their branch of Scouts Australia.