The 4-H program in Richland Parish is part of a local, state, national and international youth program. The program was established as a three-way partnership between the federal government, United States Department of Agriculture; the state government through the land grant university, Louisiana State University, and the local government as well as the Richland Parish School Board and Charter School.
4-H is a FUN and EXCITING youth organization that offers hands-on learning or experiential learning as the foundation of the program. This occurs through project work, livestock shows, method demonstrations, contests, workshops, junior leader club activities, camps, service activities or serving learning.
The national campaign of the program is "4-H is a community of young people...across America...who are learning leadership, citizenship and life skills." It was selected as a consistent message from 4-H members across the country, when asked to describe what is 4-H."
Membership is open to all children in Richland Parish who are 9 years of age before January 1 of the current year and not passed their 20th birthday on January 1. The program is open to all people regardless of race, color, gender, age, handicap, religion or national origin.
4-H Agent Joanna Strong in Richland Parish, develops and executes educational programs and activities that provide youth the opportunity to develop such life skills as self-esteem, community and citizen responsibility, decision making, organization and social interaction. These characteristics allow youth the self-confidence and communications skills to achieve the 4-H Mission. Our mission is through non-formal, research-based, experiential educational activities. 4-H participants gain knowledge and life skills enabling them to become positive, productive, capable and compassionate members of their communities.
Annual enrollment begins September through October of each school year. Members complete an enrollment card by selecting at least one project and pay their annual membership dues. A variety of parish events that consist of contests and activities are conducted throughout the program year September through August. These contests are open to only 4-H members. Project books are given out to each member in either October or November of each year. They provide a variety of activities in a specific area for the member to work on at home or with fellow members in the same area. We advise parents to lead by example in the areas of support through motivation, encouragement and guidance.
Agents are fortunate in Richland, Caldwell, Catahoula, Concordia, East Carroll, Franklin, Madison, Morehouse, Ouachita, Tensas, Union and West Carroll Parishes for their 4-H'ers to have the opportunity to exhibit beef, swine, sheep, goats, rabbits and poultry at the annual Northeast Louisiana District Livestock Show held in Delhi, Louisiana at the beginning of each new year. Students are also provided broiler entry forms which must be completed the day chicks are picked up from the 4-H office. Information about the show is provided by the 4-H Agents in their respective clubs. Exhibitor entry forms are mailed out early enough to provide the students with possession dates, District Show dates, and State Show dates. Exhibitors are also required to go on-line to complete the Ethics Training (http://qaec.lsuagcenter.com). A printed certificate must accompany the exhibitor's entry form. Students who are interested in horse events are also encouraged to participate in an annual 4-H horse event which coincides with the Livestock Show.