Claire Waller and her family were at Eyemouth Harbour on holiday when they saw Katie-Lou and her friend swept out to see by a wave.
They administered CPR at the scene.
"We just wanted to try and get her out of the water as quickly as possible. At that point she was still conscious, so we were shouting and throwing things in to to get her to grab them.
"It is very poignant to be receiving this award today. As parents, we would have done the same for ours, we would have done the same for anyone."
More top news
A look at the forecast for the Tyne Tees region.
Cumbria County Council has got £2 million to spend on roads in the Lake District.
The Citizens Advice Service in Dumfries and Galloway is urging people to avoid debt this Christmas.