The scheme was launched in September 2002 to promote voluntary service for the benefit of the community. The scheme is open to all United College students and assessment is on a yearly basis:
- A Bronze Prize for 50 or more hours of voluntary service in one year;
- A Silver Prize for 110 or more hours of voluntary service in two consecutive years;
- A Gold Prize for 200 or more hours of voluntary service in three consecutive years.
Voluntary service in existing programmes organised by the College is included in the scheme, such as social services undertaken by the United College Rotaract Club and United College Leadership Training Society. This Scheme is supported by the Eva B C Li Memorial Fund.
United College is also a registered organisation under the Volunteer Movement programme of the Social Welfare Department. Participants in the College’s Social Service Award Scheme may also obtain an Award of Social Service from the Volunteer Movement programme if they meet the award criteria.
The scheme has been strengthened from 2010-2011 to encourage more commitment from students. To encourage participation, every freshmen in September 2010 was provided a Record Book of Volunteer Service. The arrangement will continue in 2011-2012. More awards will be established and presented to students with outstanding performance in the scheme.