The International Gold Event is an important part of the set gatherings that bring together Award stakeholders from around the world. The IGE is unique because it engages directly with Award Holders and gets them together to collaborate on ideas that contribute to the Award's growth. The International Award has recently revised its mission to make the Award accessible to all eligible young people in the world by 2026. While reaching out to youth in every country is certainly very ambitious, the Award has brought in some significant changes in the last five years that will help in making this mission a reality. The Award is now branded or co-branded uniformly across the globe to create an identity for participants, alumni and Award units that run the Award. The Online Record Book that was recently piloted in India, is now a critical tool that not only helps in monitoring quality but also makes the Award experience more efficient for participants. A mobile application for logging in your sectional hours is under development as you read this!
With recent and upcoming changes, there is a need for fresh perspective and leadership that leverages these initiatives to deliver the Award to young people from diverse backgrounds in different regions of the world. Through its theme of 'Leadership for a Transformed Award', the IGE 2014 in South Korea was able to develop key leadership skills in Award alumni and helped all of us understand the opportunities and challenges for the Award's growth. The event concluded with the meeting of the Emerging Leaders- an elected body of Gold Award Holders that works closely with the International Award Council to make decisions for the Award's future. While the Emerging Leaders would work directly with Award administrative bodies, all of us returned home with enhanced understanding of the Award and ideas to expand its presence in our respective countries.
For the participants at IGE, the event was a fantastic opportunity to learn and relive our experiences from the Award. Working in teams with delegates from the around the globe was yet another opportunity to discover ourselves and know people and cultures better. We shared our Award stories and the lessons learnt and were pleasantly surprised by the similarities and fascinated by the differences of our Award journeys. All in all, the IGE is a wonderful opportunity to help Award Holders stay connected to the Award and contribute meaningfully to its vision.