4-H: Not just cows and sows

  • Wed Nov 7th, 2018 1:30am
  • Life

by Wendy Waxman Kern

San Juan County 4-H Program Coordinator

More often than not, interested families say that they might like to try 4-H, but they really don’t want to have an animal. The good news is that 4-H is for all young people between the ages of 5 and 18 (by Oct. 1).

We teach kids from kindergarten until they leave for college how to be good leaders, keep records, give presentations on topics they are passionate about, and provide service in their community. At its core, 4-H is all about experiential learning (Do – Reflect – Apply) and the four Essential Elements (Belonging, Mastery, Independence, and Generosity). We know that these are some of the most important factors in supporting young people who will grow up to be successful adults and members of our communities. In fact, 4-H’ers are 2 times more likely to be civically active; 2 times more likely to make healthier choices; and that 4-H girls are 2 to 3 times more likely to take part in out-of-school science programs compared to their peers (Tufts University, 2013).

Here in San Juan County, we strive to offer programs that fit the needs of our kids, and our activities are driven by adults in our community who have been carefully screened. These adults get involved because they care about the kids, not because they are always experts in the subject matter. After all, in 4-H, we believe in learning by doing!

Right now, our greatest need is volunteers to lead non-animal activities. If you have a passion for Legos, photography, fine arts, or crafts, we could use your help!

If you would like to get involved, get dates for upcoming meetings, or learn more about what 4-H has to offer in our community, please contact me at sanjuan.4-h@wsu.edu or 360-370-7662.