Local 4-H member participates in citizenship conference
By Sara Drake
Rowan Cooperative Extension 4-H Agent
A delegation from Rowan County 4-H attended 4-H Citizenship North Carolina Focus, which was held in Raleigh June 15-17.
More than 125 youth and adults representing more than 60 4-H programs across the state attended the three-day conference. The youth gathered to exchange ideas, gain knowledge and learn through hands-on experiences about the importance of being an active and engaged citizen.
Sam and Cheryl Oster represented Rowan County. Through various conference sessions and facilitated discussions, delegates learned and shared information related to local, state and national government. They also learned how they could make an impact in the area of citizenship.
“Going to 4-H Citizenship NC Focus helped teach me how to be a better citizen in my community, country and world,” Sam Oster said.
He also learned to “stand up,” “speak out” and “do something” when he sees things that are not right.
“I met lots of new 4-H members and leaders from across North Carolina and made some new friends. This program definitely opened my eyes to things I never really thought about before. Meeting my state legislators was enjoyable, exciting and very informative. I highly recommend this wonderful program,” he said.
Cheryl Oster, a 4-H volunteer, attended the conference as a chaperone. She enjoyed all of the speakers and workshops that were offered.
Cheryl Oster said her favorite speaker was Dr. Charles Stein, a survivor of the Holocaust.
“His presentation was emotional, and I was honored to meet him,” she said. ” My son Sam said he wished going to school could be like this experience where everyone wanted to listen, learn and was nice to one another, and everyone working together to help each other and sharing ideas to make the world better. It was a life-changing, amazing experience. We both enjoyed meeting our district representatives.”
During the conference, delegates participated in a legislative breakfast where they had a chance to meet and have photos taken with their elected officials. Following the breakfast, delegates traveled to the Legislative Building in Raleigh to meet with their elected officials and their staff.
4-H Citizenship North Carolina Focus is sponsored by North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives – Touchstone Energy. North Carolina 4-H is Cooperative Extension’s youth development program.