Mary B. Kaizer | 1/27/2010 1:41:00 AM
Family & Consumer Sciences
Due to the current economic climate, we have seen an increase in demand for residents needing basic financial management education. To help residents with financial issues the SAIL (Saving and Investing for Life) Program was offered. In the program participants learn the importance of improving ones financial stability and security by reducing debt and improving money management. Post surveys results suggest that 100 percent of the SAIL participants established emergency funds, 91 percent increased investing for retirement and 71 percent paid off some high cost debt. Support for the LSU AgCenter family economics (SAIL) program, enables participants to manage their finances to implement a saving and investing plan. Such planning increases financial stability and security and benefits other community members by reducing the demand for public assistance.
4-H Youth Development
The incidence of youth obesity is rising at an alarming rate, not only in St. Tammany Parish, but across the country. Three thousand one hundred fourteen St. Tammany Parish School Children learned to make healthy food choices especially when selecting snacks, the importance of fruits and vegetables in the diet and the role of exercise plays in improving health in a twelve week curriculum series. Participants also toured the LSU Ag Center’s Body Walk exhibit. As a result of participating in this program, teachers have reported an increase in the number of youth including at least one new fruit or vegetable in their diet at lunch and with the implementation of the take ten activities in the classroom students are increasing their physical activity by fifty minutes each week.
Agriculture & Natural Resources
As area citizens continue to settle in the St. Tammany Parish area we have more homes equaling more lawns and landscaping. Master Gardeners have been trained to provide homeowner groups, schools and churches with management and maintenance of the grounds and gardens. Several vegetable growing seminars and educational plant shows provide area residents with their horticulture information. Additionally, forestry continues to play an important interest to St. Tammany residents. Landowners continue to seek information on how to maintain their forest within the urbanization of St. Tammany Parish.
Who we reach:
53,947 -Youth (33 4-H Clubs, School Enrichment, Character Education, Youth Wetlands Week, After School Education)
67,749 - Adults
8,787 Ag & Natural Resources 58,962 Family Consumer Science
How we reach them:
4-H Clubs,Workshops & Clinics,
School Enrichment, After–School,
Shooting Sports Field days, Social media,
Newsletters, Publications, News Articles, School Gardens
Expanding our efforts:
250 Volunteers - 4-H, Master Gardeners, Family & Community
LSU AgCenter County Agents provide research-based information on plant, aquaculture, wildlife and animal enterprises to St. Tammany Parish clientele. The 2008 total dollar amount from these commodities were:
Data from the Louisiana Ag Summary
Web site: LSUAgCenter.com/agsummary
Population - 228,456
Land area (square miles) - 845.15
Persons under 18 years old - 25.9 percent
Persons 65 years old and over - 11.7 percent
Median household income - $55,891
Persons below poverty - 11.2 percent
Local Issues & Plans for this year:
1. Increase productivity and profitability of Louisiana Agriculture.
2. Promote the wise use of natural resources and protection of the environment.
3. Build leaders and good citizens through AgCenter programs.
4. Build leaders and good citizens through 4-H youth development.
5. Strengthen families and communities.