Parish Profile

About the LSU AgCenter

The LSU AgCenter is dedicated to providing innovative research, information and education to improve people’s lives. Working in a statewide network of parish extension offices, research stations and academic departments, the LSU AgCenter helps Louisiana citizens make the best use of natural resources, protect the environment, enhance agricultural enterprises, and develop human and community resources.

Program Highlights

Family and Consumer Sciences

Ouachita ranks 38 out of 64 parishes for Health Outcomes (2019 County Health Rankings).The LSU AgCenter conducts nutrition education through series of classes, special events, and social marketing to promote healthy communities and lifestyles.Partnerships have been formed through Healthy Communities Coalitions to promote policy, systems, and environmental changes.Parents are gaining positive parenting skills through the Healthy Beginnings for Your Baby series of classes.Education is also provided to help citizens identify common health hazards in homes and take action.Southern University’s Communities of Color implements 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 through three disciplines: archery, rifle, and shotgun. The Shooting Sports program and volunteers also provide young people with opportunities to develop life skills, self-worth, and conservation ethics. The Photography Club offers increased knowledge about photography such as: elements of exposure, depth of field, and composition. 4-Hers also gain a variety of invaluable photography hands-on experiences. The 4-H club educational program focus for 2019-2020 is SET (Science, Engineering and Technology).

Agriculture and Natural Resources

Horticulture programming includes an annual gardening seminar held in conjunction with Ag Expo, the Maki Horticulture Lecture Series, participation in fall and spring horticulture forums, and lectures given to various garden clubs.A weekly horticulture segment is broadcast every Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. on Louisiana Living on KARD Fox 14. The Northeast Louisiana Master Gardeners Association maintains an active presence in the community by maintaining demonstrations beds at Chennault Aviation & Military Museum, Kiroli Park, Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo, and the Farmer’s Market at Seventh Square.These and other Master Gardener projects are funded with proceeds from two plant sales throughout the year.Horticulture programming in the coming year will place emphasis on recycling and composting yard waste and establishing a seed preservation facility.Extension County Agents work with producers to conduct on farm demonstrations to educate producers on the latest research.

Whom we reach:

  • 18,103 - Youth (includes 1121 4-H members & 23 school 4-H clubs)
  • 32,737 - Adults (Mass Media efforts reached 428,595 clients.)

How we reach them:

4-H Clubs, school enrichment, field days, publications, newsletters, news articles, television, class series, demonstrations, school/community gardens, social media, website, special events, and workshops.

Expanding our efforts:

177 volunteers from 4-H, Master Gardeners, Family and Community and Healthy Communities.

Parish Facts:

LSU AgCenter Extension Agents provide research-based information on plant, aquaculture, wildlife and animal enterprises to Ouachita Parish clientele.The 2018 total dollar amount from these commodities were:

  • Plant enterprises: $52,919,855Population – 154,475
  • Fisheries and wildlife: $9,882,601Persons under 5 years old – 6.9%
  • Animal enterprises: $31,989,509 Land area (square miles) – 610.41
  • Persons under 18 years old – 24.9%Persons 65 years old and over - 14.8%
Median household income - $40,081Persons below poverty – 24.7%

Local issues and plans for this year

Increase productivity and profitability of Louisiana agriculture

  • Beef/Forage (Master Cattlemen Graduates) – restricted use pesticide certification (training and testing); cow palpation class; hay, grass and weed control; hay and grass production; rural internet options
  • Crops – restricted use pesticide certification (training and testing); variety testing; 12 row budgets; rural internet options
  • Forestry – reasonable

Promote the wide use of natural resources and protection of the environment

  • Emphasis on re-use of yard waste (composting, etc.) – work with Ouachita Green towards municipal composting
  • Emphasis on ornamental horticulture – lecture series (promote)
  • Seed preservation – seed library

Build leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development

  • There is a need for additional support/staff for the 4-H program.
  • Focus on diversity by providing a variety of experiences for all.
  • Transportation to events is often a barrier for youth.
  • Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET) will be the focus for the 2019-2020 school year.

Strengthen families and communities

  • Training for young parents on the importance of healthy eating while transitioning infants from baby food to table food
  • Farm to Table/Farmers’ Markets – Information related to nutrition; buying food from local farmers; organic foods
  • “Adulting” training for young adults
  • Positive activities for youth
  • Nutrition and healthy habits training for parents

How we are funded:

You are the local supporters and beneficiaries in the LSU AgCenter extension programs. Just 20% support keeps these programs in your community. Your parish extension office offers programs in:

  • Sustaining Louisiana agriculture, forestry and fisheries.
  • Building leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development.
  • Family, nutrition and health to enhance the quality of life for Louisiana’s citizens.

LSU AgCenter State Appropriated Funds for FY 2019-2020:

  • State general direct: 74.9%
  • Federal funds: 13.6%
  • Self-generated: 7.1%
  • Statutory deductions: 4.4%

Innovate . Educate . Improve Lives

The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture