The 4-H Youth Development Program (4-H YDP) as everything else, grows and evolves. With its growth, as with all aspects of life, comes an increase in insurance coverage, event costs, 4-H member recognition awards and enrollment fees for our program, making it even more important for the support of individuals and businesses such as yours. I thank you in advance for thinking of the 4-H YDP when making contributions to your community.
The Tulare County 4-H YDP continues to stay strong and is carried on by over 350 adult volunteers in our local communities from Dinuba to the north, Waukena to the west, and Springville and Exeter to the east. The 4-H volunteers give generously of their time, money, and facilities in conducting a successful and growing 4-H program. Last year, nearly 1,000 young people were involved in various activities of the program, such as the community club program and county-wide events. 4-H focuses on developing important life skills in our youth, fostering an interest in citizenship, leadership, and community service. 4-H is committed to the “Step-it-up-2-Thrive” program which encourages youth to identify their “spark”, tapping into their true passion in life.
The funds you donate are used throughout the year to support the 4-H members and adult volunteers through their involvement with such activities as the annual Tulare County 4-H Field Day, demonstration and public speaking opportunities, 4-H Summer Camp, leadership conferences, achievement awards, educational assistance, and outreach programs. These funds also support adult volunteer development and leadership training materials and equipment. By investing in this positive youth development program, you are investing in the development of our youth – our most valuable natural resource.
Enclosed are a self-addressed envelope and a donation form for your use. Checks should be made out to the Tulare County 4-H Leader Council. All of your donations will go directly to assist 4-H members and volunteers of our county.
We have also enclosed a letter from a 4-H member, explaining how the program has made a difference in her life. If you would like additional information about 4-H, please call (559) 684-3300 to speak to the 4-H Staff. Thank you for your support. It is greatly appreciated.
Tulare County 4-H Leader Council
Dear Tulare County 4-H Sponsoring Committee:
I first joined 4-H when I was 9 years old and in the 4th grade. At that point, I had no idea about what 4-H was or the endless paths it would take me. My first year, I joined the rabbit, shooting sports, and rocketry project. I was hooked. The thrill of the rabbit shows and the gratification I got when I hit the target was all I needed.
I could go on all day about what 4-H has taught me in the past 10 years, but I'll summarize it in a few key words. Responsibility. Character. Citizenship. Leadership. The organization, run by adult volunteers, gives tools to youth to succeed in life, like they did me. My first step to being really involved started at the county summer camp, which is a camp put on by high school aged youth in the 4-H program. I wanted to become a counselor and help run the camp. So I applied and got accepted. I soon started taking on more leadership roles, to finally be the Camp Supervisor and oversee and assist counselors in the day to day operation of the one week camp.
Along with being Camp Supervisor, I also started taking a larger role in county events by becoming a County All Star, which is the highest leadership role at the county level. All Stars assist with the county events, put on workshops at leadership conferences, and emcee events. As my second term as All Star was running out, I couldn't stop my 4-H journey at the county level. I looked for California 4-H state youth positions. I found State Ambassador.
State Ambassador is the highest position you can hold in the California 4-H Youth Development Program. I applied, interviewed, and got accepted. As an ambassador, I represent the state at 4-H and non-4-H events. Another large role as an ambassador is to put on a statewide leadership conference for high school aged youth. I, along with nine other senior members, make up the 2014-2015 California 4-H State Ambassador team.
I have had some amazing opportunities in the 4-H program. Some of the major highlights were to attend the American Farm Bureau Convention and meet Dr. Temple Grandin, a 4-H Alumni and one of the top 100 most influential people in the world.
Without 4-H I wouldn't have the life skills I have today. 4-H gave me information that would have taken me until I was a bit older to figure out. Giving back to the community and to the 4-H program to "make the best better" is now my spark.