Thursday, 9 February 2023: Young volunteers who’ve saved lives, shown exceptional bravery, or overcome difficult personal circumstances, were recognised by HRH the Princess Royal at St John Ambulance’s annual Young Achievers awards this week. 


The special event, held at Buckingham Palace, celebrated St John Ambulance Badgers (from ages 5-10), Cadets (from ages 11-17), and young carers who have made outstanding contributions in the charity. 

During the reception, The Princess spoke with dozens of young people from across the country and heard directly how their actions have helped others and positively made a difference in their local communities.

Among those recognised included St John Badger, George Parkinson. Only six weeks after joining St John Ambulance, George, who was 8 years’ old at the time, saved his Mum from choking while on a family holiday.   

As well as incredible young lifesavers attending this year’s reception were four St John Sovereign award winners, the charity’s District Cadets of the Year, National and Regional Cadets of the Year, and young people from St John Ambulance Cymru. 

In 2022, over 1,600 St John young people gave over 45,700 hours of their time providing lifesaving first aid and care alongside adult St John volunteers. 

Chief Executive of St John Ambulance, Martin Houghton-Brown, said:  

“These young people prove what I have seen time and again. When young people are given a chance to shine they really can do remarkable things.  

“At St John Ambulance, for over 100 years we have been welcoming young people from communities up and down the land and giving them the chance to not just grow skills and experience but to make a difference. HRH The Princess Royal is honouring young people, who have selflessly cared for others, literally saved lives with their First Aid skills and served their communities. I am so proud of every one of them.”  

For more information about how St John Ambulance is inspiring the next generation of lifesavers and how you can join St John’s youth programmes go to