I am both honored and excited to accept the position as the Robeson County Cooperative Extension 4-H program assistant. I am looking forward to working with new and current 4-H community groups, members and volunteers to maintain and strengthen the bond of the 4-H youth and our community.
Positive youth development and empowerment is a focus where all supporting entities come together for the success of our youth. As a community, we need to encourage youth and adults to work together, building the roads to both personal and professional development of our youth.
As encouraging and supporting adults, we help bridge the transition from youth to adulthood. It is critical that our youth are provided vital life skills and the building blocks for life that will enable them to overcome obstacles with a positive attitude and successful leadership skills.
Building relationships with our youth requires a partnership of mutual respect, embracing the differences and making the changes to be flexible and understanding. Major factors in positive youth development are building self-esteem and confidence.
Adults have the choice to make positive powerful influences on our youth and be involved in their personal and professional development. Volunteers are an important and essential part of the 4-H team. They are the glue that helps us to successfully bond the relationships on solid ground. Volunteers are the mentors that help to make the difference in a young person’s life.
The standards and expectations of our youth are set at a high level in 4-H. The four principles that drive 4-H are: Head, which represents managing and thinking; heart, which represents relating and caring; hands, which represents giving and working; and health, which represents being and living.
In addition to the four principles is the 4-H Pledge: I pledge my head to clearer thinking, my heart to greater loyalty, my hands to larger service and my heart to better living, for my club, my community, my country and my world.
Teaching our youth morals, ethics, responsibility and leadership skills are vital skills they will use in their successful journey throughout life. Volunteering is an awesome opportunity to help change lives and give back to the community.
There is always something fun and exciting going on with 4-H such as the Lumberton Christmas Parade on Nov. 7, and the Youth Achievement Night on Dec. 7.
There are many events and programs scheduled for 2013. I encourage you as a respectful, positive, and empowered adult to become a mentor and a volunteer by starting a youth club in your community.
Please call me if you have any questions or would like to start a new 4-H Community Club or join one of our existing Specialty Clubs.
For more information about the 4-H program and starting a community club, contact Wendy Maynor, Extension 4-H program assistant with North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Robeson County Center, at 910-671-3276, by email at Wendy_Maynor@ncsu.edu, or visit http://robeson.ces.ncsu.edu.