what really happens at 4-H

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by I-Have-Happy-Hens, Aug 19, 2011.

  1. I-Have-Happy-Hens

    I-Have-Happy-Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 16, 2010
    Carrboro, NC

    We would like to know what happens at 4- H meetings and shows like how many times do you go/ how long it is?

    Stuff like that, any help would be great!

  2. I-Have-Happy-Hens

    I-Have-Happy-Hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 16, 2010
    Carrboro, NC
  3. Brody's Broodello

    Brody's Broodello Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 9, 2009
    Depends on the club. You might want to find a local 4H club & call their leader with your questions.
  4. booker81

    booker81 Redneck Tech Girl

    Apr 18, 2010
    It's been a bit since I've been in 4-H, but once my child is old enough, I'll be starting her in a club.

    I was in 4-H from 8 to 18. I did mainly horses, but many clubs (like mine) encourage kids to explore other things - crafts, creative writing, other livestock etc. Our group did a LOT of volunteer work as well, and some minor fundraising (craft shows etc), to fund the volunteer opportunities.

    Since we did horses, we had 4-H horse shows available every few weeks. I think my club met once a month. The "big show" was the County Fair, and we usually stayed at the fairgrounds for the whole week. I personally showed horses, dogs, and entered items in baking, art, photography, creative writing, and more I've forgotten.

    I never did Girl Scouts, but I would imaging it's probably somewhere in the middle of how Girl/Boy Scouts is, and how FFA (Future Farmers of America) is. FFA (at least my club) is more heavily involved with agriculture than 4H, though 4H does do some ag, it doesn't seem as much as FFA (but it could have just been the clubs I was in. For instance, in FFA, we did raise poultry as a club and did take it to the slaughterhouse as a "field trip". This is more common with FFA I think that 4H.

    I loved both FFA and 4H - they are exceptional programs for youth to learn how to be reliable and creative, and the people who are leaders (that I knew) seemed dedicated to their clubs and making sure it was a good program for all. I know in my club, the leaders participated in meetings, but the meeting were ran by 4 club members, elected by the club members. I served as Secretary for my club for a few years. The volunteer work was wonderful and fun, and I look back and can actually say I did good and made a difference in the lives of others, due to 4H.

  5. Cindilou

    Cindilou Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 2, 2011
    Largo, FL
    It also depends on the club. My daughter is in a garden club and we garden every week from about September through June. (Florida is too hot in the summer to have a really great vegetable garden.) The meetings are usually short with announcements or sometimes they do projects like make bird feeders all together. Individuals within the group take on different projects that can be entered into the state fair or just entered into the local chapter to gain participation awards. My daughter has been in for 2 years and at 6 she did a presentation on why flowers smell pretty and this year she just did a booklet on healthy foods. It is nice because the kids learn public speaking skills and if they want to go do extra projects they can or not. Other clubs in our area include canine, horse and pony, and science. Most are fairly small and get together to do things like pick up trash off the beaches and other community service outings. These are generally all voluntary outings because not everyone can do everything all the time. There is also fund raising. For us, once a year we sell apples and pecans from Georgia, but that is pretty much it.
    I absolutely recommend it. Go check out a meeting and see what your level of involvement would be and decide from there. You may find that you initially do not have the time but that the club itself is so beneficial you may make more time to engage in club activities.

    We just had our end of year/beginning of year potluck dinner for the 4H in our county. The kids, all ages, are so smart and excited about what they do, it made me so happy for my kiddo to be a part of it. Way different than when I was an angsty teen! [​IMG]
  6. Stumpfarmer

    Stumpfarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2011
    One thing nobody has said: you can go to the meeting of a 4H club near you as a guest and see what the meetings are like. There's no charge to join and the meetings are supposed to be open to visitors. You can also join and then quit if you don't like it (as a member: leaders need not to do this!).

    I was a ten-year 4Her, Chicago trip winner, and a project leader for about five years, but that was back when there were big community clubs in my county that seem to have died out in the last couple of decades. We had monthly Club meetings, and projects met either bimonthly or weekly. All meetings were run according to Robert's Rules of Order (which has helped me as an adult to understand what's going on when I watch CSpan or go to County Commission meetings or hearings) and we were all encouraged to keep record books, do demonstrations at least on the project club level, and participate in judging and in contests like Meal Preparation. Things have changed a lot in the way clubs are organized here, now- there's a thing called a "Family Club" which was pretty much forbidden back then or at least discouraged anywhere except geographically isolated areas, and I don't know how much that's like the modern practice.

    Too bad, if it's changed a lot, it was a lot more useful for me in college and work to have been a 4Her than to have gone to high school, especially.
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2011
  7. Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Contact the Extension office in your county. The Youth Agent can help you with your questions.

  8. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    Quote:Here is where you should start:

    Orange County, North Carolina Cooperative Extension 4-H Youth Development page

    Call the office and ask to speak with the 4-H specialist and inquire about your local clubs and who is doing what. Depending on whether they have a specific focus or are a general club and the interests of the volunteer leadership they can vary quite a lot. No way to know until you ask about your local scene.

    I'm the secretary for my county's 4-H Adult Council and sit on the 4-H and Overall Extension Advisory Committees as well so I have a pretty good view of what happens in my county and they vary widely from a fairly narrow focus on the local fair, to Livestock Judging that goes all over the place, to clubs that have a very general focus. It's really a matter of first deciding what you are interested in then looking to see what best fits your needs. If you can't find anything it is probably possible in your county to become a Member At Large which is what my family is doing at the moment.

    Good luck!

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