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4-H teaches the value of giving back to community

By Matthew McClellan

Rowan County 4-H agent

One of the great things about 4-H is its emphasis on developing a sense of charity within the youth participating in the program.

Along with getting to do fun things like learning to shoot, learning about horses, camping, meeting new people from around the state and country, traveling and just having fun, 4-H teaches youth that being a member of your local community means giving back.

All of our 4-H clubs in Rowan County, and every 4-H club everywhere, has community service at the core of their efforts every year. Here in Rowan County, I want to spotlight a few of our clubs that have been giving back to Rowan County recently.

Most of the time when we talk about the 4-H horse program, many people think of kids riding and showing horses and learning horsemanship skills. All of those things are important aspects of the horse project in North Carolina.

So here’s the other side of the 4-H horse clubs here in Rowan County: The East Equine Explorers 4-H club volunteered at Trinity Oaks last month, spending time with residents and helping decorate the facility for spring; the Happy Trails 4-H club volunteered to help with landscaping and cleanup with Tiger World last month and got a tour to learn about the tigers; and the Blazing Hooves 4-H club helped raise funds for NC4K which is a children’s cancer charity by helping at a fundraising horse show at the East Rowan Saddle Club. Each of these clubs has a different focus in the horse project but all of them are doing amazing community service projects.

This is just a small sampling of the awesome community service that our 4-H youth participate in every year. With all of the negative media attention being thrust on youth today, isn’t it nice to know that there are youth in this community giving of themselves to help build stronger communities?

Isn’t it nice to know that there are caring adults willing to take the time to help give a positive influence to these youth? There are many more clubs that focus on other project areas and many more opportunities to get involved and I would be happy to discuss all those opportunities with you or your child. So if you’d like to get involved as a 4-H member or as volunteer, give me a call at the Rowan County Cooperative Extension Office, 704-216-8970.

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