Two Whangārei girls have been rewarded for their hard work outside of the classroom with one achieving the highest international award possible in Girls' Brigade.
Libby Cammell, 18, was presented with the Queen's Award - the highest international award possible in Girls' Brigade - while Luci Winterton, 16, was presented with the Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award at a small ceremony in Whangārei on Sunday.
Cammell, who has been with Girls' Brigade since she was 5 years old, said two years of hard work was required to achieve the Queen's Award.
It involved 48 hours of voluntary service; running two events; a verbal and written submission to Parliament based on the universal basic income; an assignment which focused on her passion for music and involved a year learning an instrument, researching two people, attending concerts and writing about them; and a written test which she sat in Wellington.
"I've always wanted to do the Queen's Award with Girls' Brigade because it's a very big thing and it teaches you a lot of confidence, and time management is a big thing - balancing this with school. I also did Duke of Edinburgh Gold at the same time so it was a lot of things on my plate," she said.
Cammell, who completed her final year at Whangārei Girls' High School last year and is now studying at Auckland University of Technology, said she started working to achieve the award in 2016 and finished mid-2018.
"This was important to me because I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it," she said.
Meanwhile, to achieve the Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award - the second level in the international youth achievement award - Winterton volunteered at Sistema, played netball, played violin and trombone, and went on three day tramp.
"I mainly did it because of Libby. It's quite good. There was a lot of team work and leadership involved and also a lot of normal life skills like learning to communicate with people," she said.
The awards were presented by Whangārei Mayor Sheryl Mai at the Heads Up Adventure Park, with the event also acting as a fun day out for brigade members.