THE GOSHEN NEWS
---- — LAGRANGE — Youth in grades one through 12 are being sought for participation in the 2014 LaGrange County 4-H program.
Students in elementary grades have been receiving enrollment information through their local schools. Enrollment materials are also available to junior and senior high students through their school offices. Electronic enrollment is again available as a fast, secure and convenient option, 4-H officials said. Families have the choice of utilizing electronic enrollment and paying the $15 per member state program fee from the convenience of home. Online enrollment can be accessed by visiting the Purdue Extension home page.
The LaGrange County 4-H program is beginning its 61st year of incorporation and along with the 4-H fair has seen significant change in the past decade, 4-H officials said. With both public and private financial support, the fairgrounds have received needed upgrades, a web site and social media communication have been refined, and entertainment, educational events and new 4-H projects have been added, officials added.
Collaborating with the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service office, the 4-H Club Association’s 30 volunteer directors are developing plans for the 2014 4-H program and the annual 4-H Fair, scheduled for July 5-12.
Through informal education, 4-H is a voluntary youth development program designed to address the interests of boys and girls through the provision of contemporary as well as traditional projects. Some of the newer projects include computers, consumer clothing, creative writing, lama, reading, recycling, scrapbook, shooting sports education and sports. There are still many projects available for traditional 4-H’ers, including foods, sewing and animal husbandry.
4-H also offers educational programming for first- and second-grade children through its Mini or Future 4-H groups and events. Future 4-H is designed to provide younger students with simple, hands on learning opportunities in a non-competitive atmosphere. Future 4-H remains a free program.
Last year some 1,300 LaGrange County youth participated in 4-H programs through traditional club and project work, events on the Purdue campus, local and classroom enrichment activities and countywide career development programs in collaboration with area FFA groups, 4-H officials said.
Some projects and clubs, including 4-H ATV, beef and market dairy cattle and shooting sports education conduct activities earlier in the new year. First-year youth in particular are asked to enroll as soon as possible for inclusion on club mailing lists and newsletters.
To obtain additional club, project, or enrollment information, contact the Purdue University Extension Office in LaGrange at 499-6334, or visit the 4-H development link on Extension’s web site at www.extension.purdue.edu/lagrange.