4-H is an organization as well as a non-formal educational program
for young people. It is managed by the Cooperative State Research,
Education and Extension Service (CSREES) of the U.S. Department
of Agriculture. The program combines the cooperative efforts of
youth, volunteer leaders, state land-grant universities, federal,
state, local governments and the CSREES of the United States Department
of Agriculture. The National 4-H Council, the national private sector
partners of 4-H, works with 4-H at all levels to provide training
and support, curriculum development, foster innovations in programs
and facilitates links within the complex partnership.
is the purpose of 4-H?
purpose of 4-H is to help young people learn, develop life skills
and form attitudes that enable them to become self-directing, productive,
and contributing members of society.
is in charge?
Local 4-H programs are managed by Cooperative Extension educators
in each county. In Washington, they are members of the Washington
State University faculty. Funding is provided through a partnership
between the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the state university
and county commissioners.
How many members does 4-H have?
Nationally, 4-H had more than 6.8 million young people and 610,000
volunteer adult and teen leaders in 2000. To put those numbers in
perspective, that combined figure is larger than the populations
of either London or Beijing.
How about in Washington State?
than 93,000 youth are enrolled in 4-H program in Washington State.
More than 20,000 are enrolled in traditional clubs. Another 73,000
participate in a variety of other 4-H activities, including school
enrichment programs and day camps. More than 10,300 adult volunteers
Are most members farm kids?
really. As of 2000, only 10 percent lived on farms
and 27 percent live in central cities with a population of 50,000
or more. About 32 percent live in towns of 10,000 or less. More
than half the members (52 percent) are girls.
Were any famous people ever 4-H members?
Quite a few, including former Vice President Al Gore, singer Faith
Hill, Garfield comic creator Jim Davis, Kevin Richardson of the
Back Street Boys, Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker and Johnny
Carson, longtime host of NBC's Tonight Show.
Where did the four-leaf clover come from?
organization's copyrighted emblem dates back to the early part of
the 20th Century. Originally, it was a three-leaf clover. The leaves
originally represented "Head," "Heart," and "Hands." The current
design was adopted in 1911.
about the 4-H pledge?
pledge - "I pledge my Head to clearer thinking, my heart to greater
loyalty, my Hands to larger service and my Health to better living
for my club, my community, my country and the world." - was written
by Otis Hall, state 4-H leader of Kansas. It was adopted at the
first National 4-H camp in 1927. The wording remained unchanged
until 1973, when "and the world" was added.