The Next Generation Awards has been designed to engage Birmingham’s young people and encourage them to become active citizens that contribute positively to Birmingham’s future.

The Next Generation Awards Scheme is a highly successful Citizenship programme that has been run by the Birmingham Civic Society for the past fourteen years and we were extremely proud to be awarded winners of the Outstanding Contribution to the Local Community Category at the Education Awards in 2018 for the Next Generation Awards Programme.

In total over 31,000 young people have participated since the programme began. Each year we aim to work with 20 schools and groups and 2000 more young people.

The award scheme is aimed at groups of young people aged 11 to 14, and is an assessed project based programme designed to meet many of the requirements of the Key Stage 3 Citizenship Curriculum, and also to develop young people’s Personal, Learning and Thinking Skills.

The programme is free to schools (and organisations that work with young people aged 11‐14) wishing to participate, and is usually run with one year group (7, 8 or 9) involving approximately six hours of class time.

The programme has been developed with the aim of stimulating creativity, nurturing enthusiasm for life, and encouraging young people to be active, responsible citizens that contribute positively to the development of the City. It is a very inclusive project, great for developing young people’s skills in teamworking, ICT, presentation, creative writing, self‐esteem and problem solving.





“It has been an amazing opportunity for our students to reflect on how they can actively help the local community… It has been great to see the four girls grow in confidence over the past few months.”


“I really enjoyed researching the topic of graffiti and going out to take photos and interview people. It was a bit scary doing the presentation to the judges though!”


“I’ve never spoken in front of an audience before and it made me think about how I come across. I feel much more confident now…The awards have been really encouraging.”

The scheme asks young people to work in teams to identify issues and trends affecting people in their community. They conduct research and develop proposals for actions that would improve some aspect of life in the future.  They present their proposals in a 5 minute presentation format to an assessment panel and compete for Gold, Silver or Bronze awards.

All young people that take part in the scheme receive individual certificates for their achievement. Each participating school (or organisation) is presented with a plaque and a selection of the best projects present again at the finals where the winning team is selected and presented with the Next Generation Awards shield by the Lord Mayor of Birmingham.

From 2016 the strongest team has been awarded ‘The Newman Prize’ of £1500 at the finals to make their project a reality. The prize money of £1500 has been very kindly donated by Newman University. The winning team is also paired with a mentor appropriate to their project to support them through to the execution of their project.

New this year, the winning team will be mentored by UpRising Birmingham, a national youth leadership development organisation. The four other finalist teams will also be mentored by students from Aston University and have a smaller budgets to work with to implement an element of their projects to enable even more young people to make a real difference to their community and city.

To highlight the important work of the Next Generation Awards an Impact Case Study has been submitted to the Chartered Association of Business Schools. You can read the Case Study here.

If you are interested in getting involved in the Next Generation Awards as part of one of the judging panel, please email .



“The Next Generation Award is well organised with great resources which are ready to use. A great initiative to get pupils engaged with their local community and make a difference for the better.”


“We have cross referenced the project with the Citizenship and PLTS and have meshed this into our whole Ci/PSHE/ PLTS provision that we place under the heading Learning for Life.”


“The visit to Newman University was a real eye opener for the girls and the talk in the minibus home was all about striving for higher education”

Nick Venning
Committee Chair
Nick was formally Marketing Director at PricewaterhouseCoopers
Committee Members

Jo Dunlop Project Manager
Michael Butler Trustee
Stephanie Bloxham Trustee
Mikayla Jones
Martin Graham