How many times have you heard someone say, “I want to make a difference” or “I want to see change”?
It takes more than words and good intentions. It requires everyone making a concerted effort, accepting each other and working together as a cohesive unit for the betterment of our youth and our community. Equally important is changing negative attitudes, being thankful for what we have, and focusing on the positive in people and our community.
There are no two people the same. We are all inherently different, and that is what makes each of us unique. It’s important for us to accept that we all have opinions — sometimes the same and sometimes different. Each of us has our own way of doing things, but that doesn’t always mean it’s the only way or the right way. There are many different ways to do something and accomplish the same end result, which is the ultimate goal. Acknowledging and accepting that we all have different personalities, strengths and weaknesses gives us a better understanding of each other — ultimately, helping us build better relationships with each other.
An important way of building relationships in 4-H is by volunteering and mentoring. It is an awesome way of teaching both youth and adults the importance of diversity, cultural differences and acceptance of people. When you volunteer, you are not only making a difference, you are the “change,” not only words. What better way to give back to the community you live in than volunteering? Become a 4-H volunteer and be a positive role model for our youth, teaching life skills, such as setting and accomplishing goals, leadership, public speaking, delivering presentations, the importance of community service and sharing your talents.
You can be the one to provide support and encouragement and have a significant influence on the lives of the youth in Robeson County. We will embrace your talents and give you the opportunity to share them with local youth. Volunteers are required to complete an application, background check, interview, and attend training to begin making a positive difference in the lives of our youth. There are training, workshops, and conferences that are provided for all 4-H volunteers.
Robeson County 4-H holds an annual Volunteer Appreciation Night to recognize all the volunteers and the work they do. Some of our volunteers have 20 to 30 years of service with the 4-H Programs in Robeson County.
So do you really want to make a difference or just talk about it? I challenge you to become a volunteer, sign a child up for the 4-H program, and make a difference in our community.
Wendy Maynor is the 4-H Youth Development Program associate for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Robeson County Center. She can be reached at 910-671-3276, by email at [email protected], or visit http://robeson.ces.ncsu.edu/.