What is 4-H?

Anyone from 9 through 18 can join 4-H.  When 4-H began in 1909, most members lived on a farm.  That’s not true anymore.  Today 4-H has programs in large cities, small towns, rural areas, on farms, and even military bases. 

4-H provides youth with hands-on, real-life opportunities to develop skills, gain knowledge, have fun, and make contributions in such areas as environmental education, community service, and current youth issues.


What Can you do in 4-H?

It’s up to you.  You can go to camp, learn to shop wisely, give a demonstration, grow vegetables, learn how to fish, make bread, shadow an adult at work, learn to make healthy food choices, give a speech, cure a ham or develop leadership skills on a challenge course.  You can perform in a skit, make a birdhouse, learn about science and technology while building a rocket or using GPS, take pictures, learn about electricity, judge livestock, or drive a tractor.  You can decorate a room, ride in a bike rodeo, be part of an international exchange, learn to sew, raise an animal, or protect the environment.  And there’s more! 


Teen members in 4-H may choose to help younger members with their projects, attend state and national conferences and events.  They can learn more about being an effective leader, improve speaking skills or demonstrate community service and citizenship through the Nelson County 4-H program.


What Can Parents/Guardians Do?

4-H is a family affair, offering many opportunities where both child and parent can participate with common interests. The success of the 4-H program experience depends greatly upon parent support and involvement. By being actively involved in 4-H, parents/guardians can ensure the best experience possible for their child.


Participation in the 4-H program allows parents to contribute to the development of not only their child, but other 4-Hers as well.  Involvement in 4-H can promote a sense of adequacy, self-worth, and self-confidence in parents. Parents gain new skills and interests as well as ideas for helping youth learn.   Through involvement in   4-H, parents can also strengthen their social networks with other parents in the community.

Research shows when parents are involved, children are more likely to progress academically, to enjoy the experience, to participate in extracurricular activities and are less likely to have discipline problems.  Working with the club, the projects or the leadership of a local school or community 4-H program shows their child that they care and are willing to give their time and energy to support their interests.


How do I Volunteer?

Volunteers are important part of Nelson County 4-H.  A Kentucky 4-H volunteer is anyone who contributes time, energy or talent to the Kentucky 4-H Youth Development Program and is not paid by University of Kentucky funds.


There are a variety of ways in which people may volunteer for 4-H.  There are seven specific types of 4-H volunteer roles in Kentucky.  These include Community Club Leader, Project Club Leader, Special Emphasis Volunteer, School Enrichment Volunteer, 4-H Committee Member, 4-H Council Member and Youth Volunteer.  If you would like to be a volunteer in Nelson County, please contact our office.  An application and background check are required for all volunteers.