President of Malta Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca presided over the Gold Award Ceremony of the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award, at San Anton Palace.
The President commended all the winners for taking the decision to improve their own lives and the lives of the families and communities through their involvement in the Duke of Edinburgh award, adding that the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme has given them the opportunity to strengthen their sense of confidence in their own abilities, to experience new opportunities, and to learn new skills.
“I believe that the empowerment of young people is essential, in order to ensure that our communities, and our society as a whole, enhances its democratic values of meaningful participation and active engagement. Through the personal development of our young people, we are contributing towards the future leaderships which we wish to see in our Maltese Islands,” President Coleiro Preca said.
She stated that the awards, are a celebration of the commitment which the all the awardees feel, to make the principles of inclusive solidarity, of sustainable peace, and of holistic wellbeing, a reality in their lives and the lives of the people around them, further stating that each one of them is proving that they are effective leaders for positive change, and active champions for social justice.
The President told the awardees that now that they have become aware of the importance of social justice, they can no longer ignore the realities of prejudice, oppression and precarity, which are creating so much vulnerability within our world.
“Your awareness of these harsh circumstances brings with it a strong sense of responsibility, to speak out and to take action, on behalf of the vulnerable. I am confident that you will go out into the world, with courage and conviction, as powerful ambassadors for peace, for resilience and for wellbeing,” President Coleiro Preca said.
Lastly, the President expressed her faith in the awardees, because through their contributions, “I have no doubt that you shall continue to nurture the need to endeavour for sustainable unity and peace, within our Maltese Islands.”