4-H Youth Development is not just a community club program but a concept and way of thinking which is larger than what some people may assume. The 4-H Pledge elaborates on the head, heart, hands, and health. The final part of the pledge is “my health to better living for my club, my community, my country, and my world.” This indicates a commitment to youth, families, and community in the broad sense of the word.
Our 4-H clubs do a tremendous amount of volunteer work for the community. This includes everything from adopting a family having financial difficulties, to adopting a grandparent or nursing home, to adopting a highway. Our kids donate gloves and hats, food and coats, and make cards and fruit baskets. They visit shut-ins and nursing homes to Christmas carol and have done volunteer baking at the Domestic Violence Center. Community outreach is something of which our clubs should be very proud. What better way to develop young people than to have them show they care about others?
Community projects that this 4-H Youth Development Program has been involved in include:
- Business Advisory Committee/Valders Public Schools for promoting business, organizations, and school partnerships for better education
- Career Expo ’97 for career exploration for Manitowoc County schools sponsored by the Manitowoc Chamber of Commerce Education Committee
- The ABC Leadership Team/a community coalition for youth and families in Manitowoc County
- The Teen Center Advisory Committee/previously called the WhereElse Club
- Lakeshore CAP Advisory Committee/for prevention of youth crime
- Manitowoc Public Library Foundation/to promote literacy to youth and families through helping
build a new library
- Farm Progress Days/Youth Tent Committee sponsored by UWEX and the Farm Progress Days
- Land Use Planning/sponsored by UWEX and the Planning and Parks Commission
- Bridging the Generations Seminar–Human Services and UWEX joint project for youth and adults
- Wisconsin Promise/UWEX coordinated, in conjunction with the ABC Leadership Team, a county delegation to Madison
- Crime Prevention Week at Expo represented ABC Leadership Team
- Diversity Leadership Team II – UWEX employees representing our county at the state level
- Chamber of Commerce Education Subcommittee for planning a more supportive and receptive environment for new families entering our community
These projects are community based and demonstrate the University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension’s mission to serve the county as a whole through participating in educational and preventive programming.