Good Citizen Day

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In 1946, the Union League established the Youth Work Committee to demonstrate its motto, “Love of Country Leads,” and to motivate high school juniors to set high personal standards of behavior and leadership as they mature into responsible citizens. In 1971, Youth Work was formalized by the creation of a trust known today as The Youth Work Foundation of The Union League of Philadelphia. The Youth Work Committee, comprised of a group of Union League members, continues as the Foundation’s program arm.

Each year, The Youth Work Committee partners with approximately 50 youth-serving organizations (‘Agencies’) from across the Greater Philadelphia region. These agencies collectively nominate 250 to 300 young men and women to receive the Union League’s Good Citizenship Award. The students are chosen without regard to race, color, creed, gender or political background, but must have demonstrated marked evidence of good citizenship.


In May, the Youth Work Foundation hosts its annual Good Citizen Day at the Union League of Philadelphia to celebrate and honor the selected students. The Good Citizen Day program features a morning of presentations and workshops focused on the aspects of good citizenship. The afternoon includes special, off-site programs at the Philadelphia’s City Hall. Students get an opportunity to explore the different branches of government and their respective roles and responsibilities. The highlight of the day for many is the Award Banquet, which is attended by many Union League members and special guests. The Good Citizenship Award has been presented to more than 17,000 students, many of whom have become leaders in their chosen business or profession.

Good Citizen Award recipients are eligible for other programs and opportunities.