It is open to boys from Year 9 upwards, starting with the Bronze Award and moving on to Gold. Unlike many of the challenges the boys face, this is very much is a personal undertaking rather than a competition against others. Each participant's programme is tailor-made to reflect his starting point, abilities and interests.
The boys choose their own activities in each of four different sections (five at Gold), undertaking a balanced, wide-ranging programme of challenges. At each level, the Award demands more time and an increasing level of commitment which encourages the boys to understand that challenges require determination as well enthusiasm.