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The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award USA

The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award USA

Getting Equipped to be #WorldReady

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Be #WorldReady

With Project Imo

Expert Mentorship

Mentors are a critical part of healthy youth development. A caring, compassionate adult outside of the family unit can provide a diverse lens for experience and help guide a youth on successful journeys.

Project Imo Excellence

The Project Imo team collectively possesses more than a century of extensive experience in youth education, adventure programming, and community building, all working to enhance your journey.

Internationally Recognized

The Duke of Edinburgh International Award is delivered in over 130 countries and was founded by HRH the Prince Philip and one of the world’s leading experiential educators & youth program innovators, Kurt Hahn

Empowering Youth to be #WorldReady

Founded in 1956 by HRH The Prince Philip and Kurt Hahn, The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is an internationally recognized program for young people, building their skills to equip them for life and work. 

Project Imo is thrilled to be an official Award Center

Award Overview

Founded in 1956 by HRH The Prince Philip and Kurt Hahn, The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is an internationally recognized program for young people, building their skills to equip them for life and work. Project Imo is thrilled to be an official Award Center.

Navigation Award Compass Event

The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is the world’s leading youth achievement award

The Award is a global framework for non-formal education and learning, which challenges young people to discover their potential and build their purpose, passion, and place in the world.

Project Imo is honored to be the first organization in Connecticut to offer the Award USA program 

Project Imo staff provides mentorship, logistical resources, skilled instruction and facilitation, resource guidance, and financial support to young people seeking to realize their leadership potential by taking part in the Award USA program in southern New England. Project Imo’s youth leadership and conservation programs, while not required to complete the Award, are a perfect place for Award Participants to develop and Project Imo works to provide scholarships for these programs.

What is the Award?

The Award is a program of activities. Each young person who takes part in the Award learns a skill, improves their physical fitness, volunteers in their community and experiences a team adventure in a new environment. Success in the Award is measured by regular participation over a fixed period of time while showing commitment and progress in each activity. All participants are supported by a network of adult mentors called Award Leaders.

Each award is fully personalized, youth led, and expertly mentored. The program focuses on real-world experiences that help the youth develop skills, build character, create community connections, and prepare themselves for the future as a global citizen in a local community.

Guiding Principals of the Award




















The Award Framework

Key Elements of the Program


Open to all between the ages:

14 and 24


Bronze (14 and older)

Silver (15 and older)

Gold (16 and older)

each progressively more challenging



Physical Recreation

Voluntary Service 

Adventurous Journey


Achieving an Award recognizes individual goal setting and self-improvement through persistence and achievement.

The Award Sections


Rock Climbing Skill Photo
Participants can choose to improve on an existing skill or try something completely new, as they develop personal interests and enhance their practical and social skills. Examples of skills are nature & environmental skills, music, arts & crafts, communications skills, STEAM field studies, and more. 

Adventurous Journey

Adventurous Journey Mountain Hike
The Adventurous Journey sparks exploration and drives a sense of adventure, as small teams plan, train and undertake a journey through an unfamiliar environment. Project Imo hosts adventurous journeys such as exploring the natural world, hiking, camping, backpacking, canoeing, and more. Each adventure is completed by a cohort of Award Participants.

Physical Recreation

Physical Recreation Lady with Bike by the ocean
Physical Recreation encourages healthy behavior and impacts the self-esteem, team skills, and confidence of participants. Physical recreation can include sports such as soccer, basketball baseball, football, hockey, golf; athletics such as running, triathlon, lifting; outdoor pursuits like watersports & hiking; martial arts, animal sports, and gymnastics.

Voluntary Service

Voluntary Service Clean Up
The Award encourages young people to spend time volunteering in their community, which both benefits others and contributes to their own growth and well-being. Voluntary service can be visiting & supporting people in need, volunteering with a local charity, sports coaching, teaching & tutoring, helping with community projects, or engaging in conservation efforts.

Outcomes and Impact

Outcomes for Young People

  • Confidence
  • Ability to manage feelings
  • Resilience & determination
  • Building relationships & leadership
  • Creativity & adaptability
  • Planning & problem-solving
  • Civic & intercultural competence
  • Personal & social well-being
  • Communication skills

Impact of the Award

  • Improved employability & earning potential
  • Improved physical health & fitness
  • Improved mental health & emotional well-being
  • Increased engagement with charitable & community causes
  • Improved environmental impact
  • Increased social & community cohesion
  • Reduced offending


  1.  At the bottom of the page click “Begin The Award Process Now” and complete the form.

  2.  A Team member from Project Imo will connect with you to discuss the Award in depth.

  3.  Complete the registration request process.

  4.  You will receive an Introduction to the Award with a Participant Handbook.

  5.  Work alongside Project Imo as your Award Leader to customize your Award experience.

  6.  Complete all the necessary components of the Award program.

Yes of course! Here are some of the opportunities to get involved with the Award process:

  • Serve as a Mentor
  • Recruit participants
  • Help facilitate an experience

Please reach out to teamimo@projectimo.org directly if you are interested with getting involved!

Rolling admissions for the award as long as you are between 14 and 24 years old. The various sections of the bronze, silver, gold award levels will need to be scheduled for each person going through the experience. Often times it is best to line up your experience with an already scheduled expedition.

  • Bronze: Age 14 to 24; 6 months minimum participation
  • Silver: Age 15 to 24; 12 months minimum participation
  • Gold: Age 16 to 24; 18 months minimum participation

There is a cost involved in the participating in the Award. This includes access to the online resources, your record personal book as well as your Award Certificate and Medal. You may be eligible for financial assistance directly through the award or the Project Imo’s Youth Program scholarship fund, if needed please reach out directly to teamimo@projectimo.org.

  • Bronze $200
  • Silver $225
  • Gold $250


  • Minimum Period 6 months
  • 3 months of each section Service, Physical Fitness, & Skills 
  • 2 days / 1 night of adventurous journey



  • 6 months to 12 months
  • 6 months of each section Service, Physical Fitness, & Skills 
  • 3 days / 2 nights of adventurous journey
  • NON BRONZE holders must do an additional 3 months in the sections.


  • 12 months to 18 months
  • 12 months of each section Service, Physical Fitness, & Skills 
  • 4 days / 3 nights of adventurous journey
  • Residential Project 5 days / 4 nights
  • NON SILVER holders must do an additional 6 months in the sections.

Registered Activity provider

Project Imo is an official Registered Activity Provider (“RAPs”) for the Award USA to offer Adventurous Journeys and/or Gold Projects. 

Check out how to Satisfy your Section Requirements:

Our offered expeditions will be updated periodically. If nothing meets the criteria you are looking for please reach out directly at teamimo@projectimo.org and we can discuss additional options and opportunities.

Get More Info

Still have questions or want to know  more about The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award USA program offerings?

Fill out your name and email below and we will get in touch!

Ready to Get Started with the Award?

Contact Information

Have you registered for any previous levels of the Award (if yes please give Award Center Name and ID)?

Which level do you want to participate?

When would you like to begin the Award process (enrollment start)?

Submitting this form is the first step in the process and does not confirm any registration or start to the Award. One of our team members will review your submission and make a connection with you soon. Thank you for your interest in the Award.


Thank you

For Completing the MLK PArticipant Feedback Form

We appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with us!

Have a wonderful rest of your school year, and remember, your voice matters!

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Terms and Conditions

As a condition to my participation in the Project Imo Program, I agree that Project Imo, Inc., their agents, trustees, officers, volunteers, participants, employees, and all other persons or entities acting in any capacity on their behalf shall not be liable for any injury, mental distress, damage, loss, expense, delay, or inconvenience suffered by me and arising out of my participation in the Project Imo program, except to the extent such injury, mental distress, damage, loss, expense, delay or inconvenience is caused solely by the willful misconduct of Project Imo. Furthermore, I hereby agree to release and discharge PI, on behalf of myself, my children, my parents, my heirs, assigns, personal representative, and estate as follows: 

  1. I acknowledge that the Project Imo programs entail various optional outdoor adventure based recreational activities such as, but not limited to: canoeing, kayaking, rock climbing, backpacking, caving, ropes courses, mountain biking, hiking, and snow skiing/boarding. These activities entail known and unanticipated risks which could result in physical or emotional injury, paralysis, death, or damage to myself, to property, or to third parties. I understand that such risk simply cannot be eliminated without jeopardizing the essential qualities of the activity. If I do decide to participate in such optional activities, such decision is mine alone and I assume all risks associated with such optional activity, and Project Imo shall not have any liability for any injury, death, loss, damage, expense, delay or inconvenience suffered by me arising out of such participation, except to the extent such injury, damage, loss, expense, delay or inconvenience is caused solely by willful misconduct of Project Imo.


    The risks of the programs include, but are not limited to: slips and falls while walking in rugged, hazardous terrain; severe weather and environmental conditions; hypothermia; accidental drowning; sprains, strains, joint dislocations, and broken bones; falling from high places; the negligence of other participants; and exposure to potentially harmful wildlife, insects, and plant life. 


    All activities are supervised throughout the program. Instruction will be provided regarding the safe use of all equipment and activities. Participants are advised to point out hazardous situations to the facilitators. 


    “I hereby take full responsibility for these risks and understand that other risks may also exist. I take full responsibility for those risks.” 


  1. “I understand that my negligence may result in injury to another person or equipment. I take full responsibility and hold harmless Project Imo from any claims, demands, or causes of action which are associated with my negligence.”


  1. “I expressly agree and promise to accept and assume all of the risks existing in this activity. My participation in this activity is purely voluntary, and I elect to participate in spite of the risks.”


  1. “I hereby voluntarily release, forever discharge, and agree to indemnify, defend and hold harmless Project Imo from any and all claims, demands, or causes of action, which are in any way connected with my participation in this activity or my use of PI’s equipment or facilities.”


  1. Should Project Imo or anyone acting on their behalf be required to incur attorney’s fees and cost to enforce this agreement, I agree to indemnify and hold them harmless for all such fees and costs.


  1. I have read and fully understand the trip description and registration form, medical contact form, and any other materials provided by Project Imo regarding the trip. I have had the opportunity to ask any questions that I may have about the trip and related activities and the responsibilities and risk involved. All of my questions have been fully answered.


  1. I certify that I have adequate insurance to cover any injury or damage I may cause or suffer while participating, or else I agree to bear the cost of such injury or damage myself. I further certify that I have no medical or physical conditions, which could interfere with my safety in this activity, or else I am willing to assume, and bear the cost of, all risks that may be created, directly or indirectly, by such condition.


  1. In the event that I file a lawsuit against Project Imo, I agree to do so solely in the State of Connecticut, and I further agree that the substantive law of that state shall apply in that action without regard to the conflict of law rules of that state


I, for myself, legal representatives, heirs and assigns, hereby release, waive and discharge Project Imo, its officers, employees, directors, shareholders and its parent and affiliated companies (“Releasees”), from all liability to me, legal representatives, heirs and assigns, for any and all loss or damage, and any claims or damages resulting therefrom, on account of injury to my person or property, even injury resulting in my death, while I am participating in said activity and/or being transported to or from said event, unless such loss is caused solely by the willful misconduct of a Releasee. 

Medical Disclosure:  I neither know of nor have any reason to believe that I have any medical condition and certify that I am not taking any prescription or non-prescription drugs that could either result in injury to me or others if I participate in any activity during the Project Imo program, become excited, agitated or anxious, assist in rescue situations, provide emergency care, receive emergency care or other first aid (i.e., due to an infectious disease, diabetes or other condition) or otherwise adversely affect my ability to participate in this event.  

I acknowledge that if anyone is hurt or property is damaged during my participation in this activity, I may be found by a court of law to have waived my right to maintain a lawsuit against Project Imo on the basis of any claim from which I have released them herein. 

I hereby grant to Project Imo all rights necessary to enable Project Imo to use, reproduce, assign, and/or distribute, in all forms and in any media, my image and/or photograph or video, and any such other items related to my use of the Project Imo programs and events for promotion and/or education purposes. I have had sufficient opportunity to read this entire document. I have read and understood it, and I agree to be bound by its terms. 

In consideration of (Print minor’s name) (“Minor”) being permitted by Project Imo to participate in its activities and to use its equipment and facilities, I further agree to indemnify, defend and hold harmless Project Imo from any and all claims which are brought by, or on behalf of Minor, and which are in any way connected with such use or participation by Minor. 

Thank you for choosing Project Imo programs! We’re excited to take a journey with you. There are a few things that you need to prepare for in advance of your day with us.


  • We will be outside. This means you need to dress appropriately. We will proceed in variable weather conditions so please check the forecast the day(s) of the program. Rain cover is required if there is any chance of inclement weather.
  • Dress in layers that will prepare you for different kinds of weather specific to our region depending on the time of year
  • Sturdy, close-toed shoes-trail sneakers or boots; with socks are REQUIRED
  • Long pants are strongly suggested to protect from tick-borne illness.
  • Long-sleeved t-shirt or shirt are strongly suggested
  • Winter hat or something similar if appropriate for time of year
  • Winter gloves or something similar to keep your hands warm if appropriate for time of year



  • Signed (1) “Guidelines” (this form), (2) “Waiver and Acknowledgement Agreement”, and (3) “Health and Medical Background-Emergency Contact Information” forms


  • Positive Identification if adult, Insurance Card or information (in case of emergency)
  • Water bottle (with your name on it) and any food or snacks are outlined in your program contract
  • A backpack, bug spray, sunscreen, light source (flashlight, headlamp)


  • Project Imo hiking programs are an adventure. Come prepared with an attitude and an appetite for the exciting, the new, the ambiguous, and the profound. Leave your troubles behind, open your mind, and get ready for a great experience.
  • Group hiking is a cooperative experience. Pace and trail etiquette are discussed at the onset of the program. If the Project Imo facilitators need to adapt the pace to ensure everyone is included and can safely participate, everyone on the program must follow directions for safety.
  • We use the model “Challenge of Choice.” You are not required to do anything if you feel it poses unreasonable physical or psychological stress to you; you will be challenged to go beyond your comfort zone and to take new risks.
  • Because of safety risks inherent in an adventure program, you must follow the directions of the facilitators.


  • All participants in Project Imo, Inc. sponsored hikes must be able to complete the following requirements WITHOUT ASSISTANCE or WITH ASSISTANCE FROM A TRAINED, 1-on-1 AID,
  • Effectively warn other participants or staff of personal distress, injury, illness, or need for assistance,
  • Effectively warn others of impending adverse conditions such as tree branches, tripping hazards, falling rocks, steep elevation, animals and insects, rapid water, and other environmental hazards.
  • Communicate effectively up to a distance of 50 feet to alert program participants of hazards or distress.
  • Understand and follow basic instructions, such as urgent directions to move, stop, or other actions.
  • Travel during inclement weather.
  • Communicate nonverbally, potentially at night and in low-light conditions, through use of systems such as hand signals, rope tugs, body movement, etc.
  • Perform necessary self-care in remote or outdoor environment, including maintaining hydration and nutrition, dressing appropriately for the weather, maintaining personal hygiene and toileting, managing personal medical conditions, and utilizing safety gear.
  • Must be able to traverse uneven, rocky, or sometimes unstable terrain both up and downhill.
  • Travel without stopping at pace for up to half an hour if conditions become dangerous.
  • With a backpack or similar item, carry personal and/or group gear if necessary and under adverse for a period of time equivalent to half the scheduled outing.
  • Sustain for a potential two-hour extension of the planned activity in case of emergency.


  • Each facilitator carries a First Aid kit and supplies; let us know if you need anything.

Trail Specific Information


  • Pace- Project Imo trip leaders will work to ensure that the person in the lead of the trail line does not carry a pace where they spend time waiting for the group to catch up, and the person at the end of the line never gets a rest. We will hike as a group.
  • Leave No Trace- all Project Imo programs follow Leave No Trace principals. Our staff will cover the basics of these critical practices before we hit the trail.
  • Project Imo hiking participants must be able to work together in a cooperative manner to ensure safe and successful exploration of our greenspaces. This may include problem solving and flexibility to adapt to changing natural environments


Mosquitos and ticks are vector species for infectious bloodborne diseases. Both can transmit potentially serious viruses through bites. There are two main ways to reduce the risk of infectious bites. Ticks live in grassy, brushy, or wooded areas. . Many species of mosquitos live in forests, marshes, and tall grasses. All species of mosquitos like water.

  • PROTECTION – We recommend placing a barrier between exposed skin and potential bites. This can include a combination of bug repellent sprays and clothing. Long pants and sleeves when travelling in tall grasses and underbrush are recommended, as are close-toed shoes and socks. The Centers for Disease Control recommend bug sprays containing EPA-registered insect repellents and treating clothing and gear with 0.5% permethrin. (but do not use directly on skin). Insect-barrier nets that cover your head are recommended when mosquitos are prevalent.

  • BEHAVIORS – Walk to the center of trails if at all possible. If your travels take you through brush or tall grass, conduct a tick-check. Check your clothing for ticks, shower after you return home, and on extended time outdoors, check your body for ticks. Conduct a full body check including under the arms, in and around the ears, inside the belly button, back of the knees, between the legs, and around the waist. Avoid standing water to reduce interactions with mosquitos.

I acknowledge that I have read these guidelines, and agree to abide by them while participating at in Project Imo programming:


Media Release: Project Imo, Inc. periodically uses electronic and traditional media for publicity, educational, or advertising purposes. By indicating my stance and providing my signature on this form, I acknowledge receipt of this document and deny or give permission to Project Imo, Inc. and its agents to use such reproductions of my person in any and all forms of media for educational, publicity, or advertising purposes in perpetuity without further consideration from me.

I hereby waive any right to inspect or approve the finished photographs or printed or electronic matter that may be used in conjunction with them now or in the future, whether that use is known to me or unknown, and I waive any right to royalties or other compensation arising from or related to the use of the photograph.

I understand that I will need to notify Project Imo, Inc. if any changes to my situation occur that will impact this media release permission.

As part of the registration process for participation in our expedition program, participants are required to complete a health and medical screening form. This form collects basic demographic information and asks about any health problems, limiting physical disabilities or handicaps, allergies, reactions to medication, medical limitations, current medications and reasons, and medical insurance information. Participants acknowledge that this form is a mandatory part of the registration process and must be completed and submitted prior to the commencement of the expedition. The form will be made available for download upon completion of the registration process and will also be included in the confirmation email sent to participants.

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