Shelby County 4-H is Building Champions

January 16, 2015 - While many people think that 4-H is just about raising livestock, nothing could be further from the truth! We have numerous 4-H’ers involved in projects like clothing & textiles, photography, public speaking, shooting sports, etc. No matter what the project, the goal of 4-H is to develop life skills and leadership within young people so they become productive, contributing members of society. And we could not do it without the time, talent and dedication of 4-H volunteer leaders, so special thanks to them!

Shelby County 4-H is busy gearing up for our spring events, and there is still time for your child become a member of 4-H. Clubs meet on a monthly basis in Center, Shelbyville, and Joaquin. Some of our planned projects for spring include: shooting sports (shotgun and archery), virtual fishing, livestock showing, outdoor adventures, fashion (beginning sewing, storyboard, Trashion Fashion, and duct tape creations), companion animals, and public speaking.

Research has shown that participation in 4-H programs makes a positive difference in the lives of youth. Youth development scholar, Dr. Richard Lerner, works with researchers at the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University to conduct The 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development. The longitudinal study has found that, when compared to other youth, young people involved in 4-H are:

  • Two times more likely to be more engaged in school;
  • Two times more likely to plan to go to college;
  • Three times more likely to make positive contributions to their communities; and,
  • Nearly two times more likely to participate in science, engineering, or computer technology programs (STEM) learning programs during out-of-school time.

Overall, the study found that the advantages of 4-H participation include higher educational achievement and higher motivation for future education.

As part of the Cooperative Extension System of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and implemented by the nation’s 109 land-grant colleges and universities, 4-H has been educating youth in the sciences for more than 100 years.

4-H, the largest youth development organization, is a community of seven million young people around the world learning leadership, citizenship, and life skills. National 4-H Council is the private sector, non-profit partner of 4-H National Headquarters located at the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) within USDA. In the U.S., 4-H programs are implemented by the 109 land grant universities and the Cooperative Extension System through their 3,100 local Extension offices across the country. Overseas, 4-H programs operate throughout more than 50 countries.

If you are interested in joining Shelby County 4-H or would like additional information on our programs, give us a call at the Shelby County Extension office at 598-7744 and speak to either Daphne Lovell, Office Administrator, Lane Dunn - Agriculture and Natural Resource County Agent or Jheri-Lynn McSwain - Family and Consumer Sciences County Agent. If you are thinking about joining, make the call today!