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Showing posts from April, 2018

In 4-H, youth grow a commitment to serving their community.

Meet Gigi.
In 4-H, Gigi has been discovering her power to serve.
As a 12-year member of Hayward 4-H Club, Gigi can hardly remember a time without 4-H. She's followed her older siblings in showing various livestock but also branched out, exploring a range of projects including photography, gardening, food and nutrition and fine arts and crafts. 4-H gives her the opportunity to work hard toward a goal and expand her creative skills.

Teaching leadership is Karyn Santl's passion

For a non-camper, Karyn Santl sure has made a big impact on 4-H camps. For the past 20 years, she has been working with camp counselor training at 4-H camps across Minnesota.

Camp counselor training has far-reaching effects. The teenagers who take the training learn leadership skills they'll use throughout their lives. "They're learning how to work with others, how to lead - lead a song, lead a game, teach content, deal with behaviors, group dynamics," Karyn said. "Things don't always go as planned, so they learn how to think on the spot and deal with adversity, even when they haven't had much sleep."
And it's not only the teenage counselors who benefit. Good quality training for counselors also affects the many younger youth who come to 4-H camps. Last year, nearly 4,000 Minnesota youth participated in 4-H camps. "It's always exciting when I hear from alumni about how much they related to their camp counselors," Karyn said. "…

Tim Goldsmith and Signe Wass: "Our 4-H roots brought our family together"

Tim Goldsmith and Signe Wass are proud 4-H alumni and University of Minnesota graduates. They met in college at the University of Minnesota, School of Veterinary Medicine. Later, when Signe’s mother was going through some old photos, they discovered that in high school, they showed swine against each other in the same class at the state fair, but never knew each other. Having the common roots of 4-H brought them even closer together and provided a foundation for them to raise their children with.

 "I try to live out the health part of the pledge for raising my family," said Signe. "We try to eat properly, be active, and of course be civically engaged leaders in our community." They aspire to model these behaviors for their two daughters, who are in Goodhue county 4-H.

They are alumni from two separate counties. Tim is from Fillmore and Signe is from West Otter Tail.



During their time in 4-H, both Time and Signe showed livestock at their county and state levels. Tim sh…

When youth partner with adults, they become better leaders

Monthly column from Minnesota 4-H director Dorothy McCargo Freeman
The young man at the far right of this photo is named Evan. He's a 4-H'er from Hubbard County. For the past year, Evan has served on a team focused on enhancing youth learning in our 4-H photography project.

He is one of four youth on this 4-H Photography Project Development Committee. His commitment to centering the values and interests of young people inspires me.

"4-H has taught me that youth voice is really important," said Evan. "I'm glad I get to influence 4-H photography at the state level. It's great to be part of something so big."

4-H animal-lovers and healthy living champions

Screaming for joy (and an adrenaline spike) while sliding down a snow-covered hillside.

Bundled up from head to toe in snowsuits on a wintery Sunday afternoon.

This is how you can often find members of the Cass County 4-H club, Hooves, Paws, and Claws. Snow tubing is just one of the many ways they integrate healthy living activities into their time together. Nutritional snacks along with games and activities are now the norm each time this club gathers. But that hasn't always been true.

Healthier food choices About a year ago, 4-H volunteer Teri McAllister realized that small changes, such as healthier snack options, could make a big impact on the youth of her club. She started by adding more fruit and vegetables and skipping the chips as snack options at meetings.