Ouachita Parish Profile 2017-2018

Robin Miller  |  2/2/2018 5:01:04 PM

Program Highlights

Family & Consumer Sciences
Obesity and sedentary lifestyles are a major concern for the people of Ouachita Parish and are contributing factors to other concerns such as diabetes, heart attack/stroke and healthy eating. In order to promote healthy communities and lifestyles, the LSU AgCenter is conducting nutrition education through: series of classes, special events, partnerships with the Healthy Community Coalition along with other agencies/organizations, and an extensive social marketing campaign. In addition, parents are gaining positive parenting skills through participation in the Healthy Beginnings for your baby series of classes. A local elementary school is also partnering with the AgCenter on a comprehensive Healthy Communities initiative. Southern University’s Communities of Color program serves to organize and implement tobacco prevention and control programs.

4-H Youth Development
Youth have a need to gain leadership, citizenship, and life skills to enable them to become positive, productive, capable, and compassionate members of the community. The 4-H program aims to help youth meet those needs through educational programming, service learning, and leadership opportunities. Ouachita 4-H members participate in a wide variety of project areas. Shooting Sports youth learn marksmanship, safe and responsible firearm use, and principles of hunting/archery. The Shooting Sports program and volunteers provide young people with opportunities to develop life skills, self-worth, and conservation ethics. The Chef Apprentice program provides youth with the opportunity to learn about basic nutrition, food safety, cooking skills, and kitchen safety. Food preparation and food safety are lifelong skills that all young people should learn in support of a healthy lifestyle. The 4-H club educational program focus for 2017-2018 is Character Education.

Agriculture & Natural Resources
Educating the public on Agriculture and its role in their lives is a major goal of the LSU AgCenter. Ag Expo is conducted annually and is a strategic outlet for informing people about where their food comes from and the importance of Agriculture to Ouachita Parish and Northeast Louisiana. In addition, Ag Alley school programs afford children an opportunity to learn about agriculture and food origins. On farm demonstrations featuring corn, soybeans, irrigation water, and nematodes were conducted to educate producers on the latest research. These demonstrations are a valuable part of the overall educational process to help producers be better farm managers and be more efficient in their operations. In Horticulture, gardening presentations are given along with home visits to help home owners and producers troubleshoot plant issues. A weekly Horticulture TV spot is featured on Tuesday afternoons on KARD Fox 14 as part of the Louisiana Living program. Ongoing Master Gardener projects include maintaining beds at Chennault Aviation Museum, Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo, and a Louisiana Super Plant demonstration garden at the West Monroe Farmer’s Market.

Who we reach

  • 35,675 - Youth (includes 1,324 4-H members & 21 school 4-H clubs)
  • 35,929 - Adults

How we reach them

  • 4-H clubs
  • Class series
  • School Enrichment
  • Demonstrations
  • Field days
  • Workshops
  • Newsletters
  • Web sites
  • Publications
  • Social media
  • News Articles
  • School Enrichment
  • Television
  • Special Events/Fairs
  • School/Community Gardens

Expanding our efforts
239 Volunteers

Parish Facts

LSU AgCenter County Agents provide research-based information on plant, aquaculture, wildlife, and animal enterprises to Ouachita Parish clientele. The 2015 total dollar amount from these commodities were:

  • Plant enterprises - $52,486,142.
  • Aquaculture and wildlife - $5,420,417.
  • Animal enterprises- $31,016,659.

*The above data from the Louisiana Ag Summary

  • Population - 156,983
  • Land area (square miles) - 610.41
  • Persons under 18 years old - 25.4%
  • Persons 65 years old and over - 13.9%
  • Median household income - $37,754
  • Persons below poverty - 23.0%

*The above data from the United States Census Bureau

Local Funding

  • Ouachita Parish Police Jury
  • Ouachita Parish School Board
  • Monroe City School System
  • City of West Monroe
  • City of Monroe

Local Issues & Plans for this year

1. Promote healthy communities to improve health outcomes among both youth and adults in Ouachita Parish.

  • Conduct educational programs on physical fitness and nutrition for families.
  • Educate young children on healthy eating.
  • Conduct nutrition programs for chronic disease prevention.
  • Work with the Healthy Communities Coalition to promote healthy communities efforts.

2. Build leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development.

  • Increase knowledge of youth related to character development and the six pillars of character.
  • Promote cancer awareness through service learning projects.
  • Develop leadership, citizenship, and life skills in 4-H and other youth.

3. Increase productivity and profitability of Louisiana Agriculture.

  • Evaluate soybean varieties for resistance to root-knot nematodes.
  • Variety demonstrations on corn, soybeans, and cotton to be continued.
  • Research to continue on irrigation for corn and soybeans.
  • Enhance communication between local growers and markets.
  • Promote the establishment of new growers and diversification in commodities.
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