National 4-H Week is a yearly celebration by millions of youth, parents, volunteers and alumni coming together to promote the many positive youth development opportunities offered by 4-H.

This year’s National 4-H Week is Oct. 3 through 9. The theme for is “Find Your Spark,” and is a campaign created by National 4-H Council to celebrate the resiliency of young people who have brought about significant innovations in agriculture and technology.

“4-H provides opportunities for youth to find their spark by providing educational opportunities, caring mentors and service-learning opportunities,” said Janice Weddle, County Engagement Specialist in Youth Development with the University of Missouri Extension. “Youth choose their own path and are guided by volunteers with similar passions.”

Local 4-H will observe National 4-H Week this year by highlighting some of the inspirational 4-H youth in our community who are working tirelessly to support each other and their communities. 

“In Missouri 4-H, we offer all youth the opportunity to find their spark by providing educational programming in a wide variety of areas,” said Lupita Fabregas, Director of Missouri 4-H., “and we allow youth to pick their own path to success and become true leaders of today and tomorrow. By providing caring adult mentors who have a passion about what they do, we are able to give youth hands-on experiences to help them on their spark.”

“4-H provides many valuable experiences,” Weddle said. “Texas County has had many youth members complete projects that have led them to their career path and even helped them receive college scholarships in their interest area.”

In Texas County, more than 328 youth and 21 adult volunteers from the community are involved in 4‑H. Volunteer club leaders in the county include Melinda Hutson, Flo Crisp, Serena Hagler, Sarha Pereslete and Joey and Faith Anderson.

“The foundation of a strong 4-H program is the volunteers,” Weddle said. “They do a great job in ensuring youth of the community have an excellent 4-H experience.”

One of the most anticipated events of National 4-H Week every year is the 4-H STEM Challenge. The theme of this year’s event, which is expected to see hundreds of thousands of youth across the nation taking part throughout October, is “Galactic Quest.”

Developed by Clemson University, Galactic Quest explores the history of humans in space, the technology and resources needed for missions, and the obstacles humans encounter in orbit. Activities explore important STEM topics ranging from physics and engineering to computer science and space agriculture.

For more information about Texas County 4-H call Weddle at 417-349-4134 or email her at weddle@missouri.edu.

ABOUT 4-H

As the nation’s largest youth development and empowerment organization, 4-H is designed to cultivate confident kids who tackle the issues that matter most in their communities.

In the United States, 4-H programs include 6 million young people through the 110 land-grant universities and Cooperative Extensions in more than 3,000 local offices serving every counties and parishes around the nation. Outside the U.S., independent 4-H organizations include a million young people in more than 50 countries.

The National 4-H Council is the private sector, nonprofit partner of the Cooperative Extension System and 4-H National Headquarters located at the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) within the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

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