Catahoula Parish Profile 2016-17

Karen Allbritton, Powell, Ashley  |  3/28/2017 2:11:14 PM

Program Highlights

Family, Nutrition and Health
Obesity and Childhood Obesity are huge issues for the state of Louisiana. In Catahoula alone, adult obesity rate is 31-36%; while the obesity rate for children age 2-4 is about 13%. Approximately 12.2% of the adults in Catahoula Parish suffer from diabetes, which in some cases can be prevented or controlled by diet. Programs such as Family Nutrition Night, Let’s Eat for the Health of It (Adults and Children), Body Quest for 3rd graders, Show Me Nutrition, Happy Healthy Me, as well as other programs, are hands-on interactive programs that teach the core basics of nutrition and encourage participants to adopt healthier lifestyles. Eat Smart, Live Strong is a nutrition program designed for the specific nutrition and health needs for senior adults looking to improve their health and knowledge of nutrition. 2015-2016 Outreach was limited because there was no agent hired in the Family and Consumer Sciences position until March of 2016.

4-H Youth Development
The focus of the 4-H school club program, 4th-12th graders, for the 2015-2016 school year was Science, Engineering and Technology (SET). Educational programs were taught each month to cover topics to promote awareness of the many opportunities available through SET. The 4-H Cloverbuds Program, targeting Kindergarten thru 2nd graders, was also taught in all schools in the parish and focused on healthful eating and physical activity. Youth were able to strengthen their leadership skills while teaching nutrition lessons to youth and adults as part of a joint effort between Tensas and Catahoula parishes which has received grant funding for the past 6 years. The TEN CAT: Making Families Fit program focused on teaching families how to eat healthy and be physically active in Tensas and Catahoula parishes and across the state. One TEN CAT teen leader was chosen to attend and present at the National Healthy Living Summit at National 4-H in Chevy Chase, MD. Youth also learned the importance of giving back to their communities through service learning projects through their school clubs and the Junior Leader club. They participated in canned food drives for local food banks, toy drives for underprivileged youth, can tab drives for St. Jude Research Hospital, dollar days for foster care and caroling at local retirement centers. These activities provided youth a sense of belonging and an appreciation for helping others. Over 1,000 Catahoula youth and science teachers were involved in the Youth Wetlands Project through their science class at their perspective schools. Youth continue to strengthen their skills through the parish, district and state livestock and horse programs offered through 4-H.

Agriculture & Natural Resources

The sustainable production of row crops, timber, and beef cattle continues to be a major economic stimulus to the Catahoula Parish economy. LSU AgCenter seeks to provide training, education, and outreach to producers and landowners in order to promote best management practices. These goals are achieved through core block demonstrations, field days, producer meetings, and one on one consultation. These efforts in row crop production are vital in the agriculture industry. Forest production in Catahoula remains strong and is supported through a variety of educational seminars in the region attracting land owners, loggers, and industry personnel. Beef cattle industry is supported through the Cattleman’s Association and education on forage production and weed control. Home and garden enthusiasts are offered a Master Gardener course that has now teamed up with Tensas and Concordia Parishes to better serve the tri-parish region. This course provides gardeners the opportunity to receive certification for their knowledge. The LSU AgCenter remains well rooted in Catahoula Parish and looks forward to serving the needs of its residents.

Who we reach:

6,181 - Youth (4-H, FCS, ANR) Includes TEN CAT, Youth Wetlands, Ag Alley, Ag Magic, Ag Adventures, Project Learning Tree, Cloverbuds, and 11 4-H clubs

4,952 - Adults (4-H, FCS, ANR)

How we reach them:

4-H Clubs Class series
School Enrichment Demonstrations
Field days Workshops
Newsletters Websites
Publications Social media

Home/Farm/Office Visits

Expanding our efforts:
162 Volunteers - 4-H, FCS, ANR

Parish Facts

LSU AgCenter County Agents provide research-based information on plant, aquaculture, wildlife and animal enterprises to Catahoula Parish clientele. The 2015 total dollar amount from these commodities were:
—Plant enterprises - $64,579,776

—Aquaculture and wildlife - $4,482,401

—Animal enterprises - $7,174,956

Data from the Louisiana Ag Summary
Web site:

Population - 10,147

Land area (square miles) - 708.03
Persons under 18 years old - 22.8%

Persons 65 years old and over - 15.8%

Median household income - $34,904

Persons below poverty - 27.2%

Local Issues & Plans for this year

Ag and Natural Resources: Increase productivity and profitability of Louisiana


  • Conduct crop production meetings for producers
  • Conduct timber and wildlife management workshops through extension forestry
  • Write news articles, newsletters, and update social media websites
  • Conduct farm and home educational visits
  • Introduce Project Learning Tree to local and regional school systems

4-H Youth Development: Building leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development

  • Conduct activities to strengthen leadership skills of youth (TEN CAT Club, Livestock Program, Shooting Sports Program)
  • Conduct youth programming targeting Healthy Living
  • Promote gardening and physical activity through school and community gardens
  • Offer a variety of workshops to engage youth
  • Promote service learning projects to encourage giving back to community

Family and Consumer Sciences: Strengthening families and communities

  • Target school age children with research based nutrition education to improve children’s knowledge in order to enable them to make better food choices
  • Provide research based nutrition education to senior adults to improve their knowledge to enable them to make better food choices that will affect their overall general health, and also meet specific health needs
  • Provide introductory nutrition education to pre-school aged children, to begin their knowledge base of the 5 food groups and what it means to live a healthy lifestyle and eat healthy

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The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture