Lifesaving and Meritorious Action Awards

Overview

To recognize registered youth and adults who have performed an attempt to save a life or to recognize notable acts of service that need not involve attempts of rescue or risk to self, but put into practice Scouting skills and/or ideals.

Who Can Earn This Award?

Presented to National Court of Honor–approved youth and adults; not qualifying are individuals who do lifesaving as part of their job, such as an EMT, lifeguard, or doctor.

How to Get the Award

Nomination is made to the local council, which nominates someone to the National Court of Honor; the National Court of Honor makes final determination of level awarded and sends award and certificate back to the local council for appropriate presentation.

Supply Item Description and Uniform Placement

Certificate; knot, worn on uniform above left pocket; appropriate level medal; medal may be worn on formal occasions and with civilian wear.

Click here for more information.

Click here to download the award application.

Complete and submit to the Jefferson Scout Store or email the Lifesaving and Meritorious Action Awards Committee.

Note:   On page 3, do not complete the “summary of action” section at the bottom as this will be completed after follow up interviews have been completed by a Council representative.   Be sure to use the electronic form.   Any additional documentation should be submitted separately.  The Council will add these into the application at a later date and time.   Please note that the National Court of Honor meets four times a year so it may take up to 3 months to get an award decision.   Note:   As of December 31, 2012, the Heroism Award was discontinued.

For more information, please email the Lifesaving and Meritorious Action Awards Committee.

Lifesaving Awards – Facts

The Boy Scouts of America launched its medals recognition program in 1911 to recognize Scouts and commissioned leaders who had saved a life. The first Honor Medal recipient was Charles Scruggs of Cuero, Texas, who received a bronze medal in 1911.

From 1911 to 1923, 23 Gold Medals, 140 Silver Medals, and 431 Bronze Medals were awarded. In 1923, the awards were redesigned and renamed.

Honor Medal With Crossed Palms

The Honor Medal With Crossed Palms may be awarded in exceptional cases to a youth member or adult leader who has demonstrated unusual heroism and extraordinary skill or resourcefulness in saving or attempting to save a life at extreme risk to self.

  • Awarded in 2012: 14
  • Awarded in 2013: 11
  • Cumulative awards since 1924: 288

Stats as of January 2015

Honor Medal

The Honor Medal may be awarded to a youth member or adult leader who has demonstrated unusual heroism and skill in saving or attempting to save a life at considerable risk to self.

  • Awarded in 2012: 52
  • Awarded in 2013: 98
  • Cumulative awards since 1923: 2,452

Stats as of January 2015

Heroism Award (Discontinued on December 31, 2012)

The Heroism Award, formerly the Certificate of Heroism, may be awarded to a youth member or adult leader who has demonstrated heroism and skill in saving or attempting to save a life at minimum risk to self. The action taken need not involve attempts of rescue or risk to self, but must put into practice Scouting skills and/or ideals.

  • Awarded in 2012: 155
  • Cumulative awards since 1923: 6,077

Stats as of January 2015

 

Meritorious Action Awards – Facts

Medal of Merit

The Medal of Merit may be awarded to a youth member or adult leader who has performed some outstanding act of service of a rare or exceptional character that reflects an uncommon degree of concern for the well-being of others.

  • Awarded in 2012: 126
  • Awarded in 2013: 249
  • Cumulative awards since 1945: 6,478

Stats as of January 2015

National Certificate of Merit

The National Certificate of Merit may be awarded to a youth member or adult leader who has performed a significant act of service that is deserving of special national recognition.

  • Awarded in 2012: 53
  • Awarded in 2013:  86
  • Cumulative awards since 1989: 1,784