L – R: Scarlett Seymour, Collise Seymour, Scott Seymour and Beatrice Seymour.

As we launch into a new 4-H year, we are reminded that 4-H is a family affair! While the youth are actively enrolled in the 4-H program, the family is truly the support system for success.

4-H Positive Youth Development is a “whole family” experience. While the 4-Hers are active in their 4-H projects, other family members are also actively assisting in, participating in and/or enabling the hands-on learning. Parents/guardians provide a supportive role. They enable the youth to fully participate by transporting them, helping with project costs, providing encouragement and cheering them on. Siblings work along-side the 4-H members. The younger ones are learning and helping, while the older siblings may be teaching and providing real-life lessons from their own experiences. And grandparents are the ultimate supporters. Many of this older generation grew up in the 4-H program and have valuable first-hand knowledge and experiences. They share their expertise and they inspire the youth to explore and experience all that 4-H has to offer. 

4-H is more than just fun; 4-H helps youth to gain lifeskills that can help them to grow into caring and contributing citizens. But 4-H also helps to strengthen the family bond, through the qualities and values that 4-H has come to represent: responsible citizenship; teamwork; resiliency; self-discipline; self-esteem and leadership; to name a few. 4-H helps to bring families together for the common good – the health and safety of the 4-H members.  By offering youth something positive to participate in, we are helping to keep them safe and active and contributing to their own futures.  

Join 4-H today by contacting your local extension office! The 4-H year runs from Oct. 1 – Sept. 30. 

If you would like more information on this or other Extension programs, please contact Linda McLean, Colville Reservation WSU Extension Director, (509) 634-2305 or ljmclean@wsu.edu . Or you may contact the WSU Ferry County Extension office at, (509) 775-5225 ext. 1116 or the WSU Okanogan County Extension office (509) 422-7245. Extension programs and employment are available to all without discrimination. Evidence of noncompliance may be reported through your local Extension office. 

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