Texas 4-H, part of one of the largest youth organizations in the nation, is once again getting ready to welcome new members as well as existing members through its annual enrollment process starting Aug. 15.
Texas 4-H is administered though the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. AgriLife Extension offices throughout the state will be hosting events to introduce youth and adults to the program’s variety of fun and educational opportunities.
4-H programs in science, healthy living, civic engagement and a variety of other interests are backed by universities and a robust community of 4‑H volunteers and professionals. Through hands-on learning, youth build confidence, creativity and curiosity, while also developing life skills such as leadership and resiliency to help them thrive in today’s world.
Learning about Texas 4-H
“Texas 4-H is for kids of almost any age,” said Montza Williams, state 4-H program director. “Children in kindergarten to second grade can be Clover Kids if that option is offered in your area. Young people in third to 12th grade can be bona fide 4-H members who can experience every opportunity the Texas 4-H program provides.”
Willliams said more than 550,000 youth are involved in Texas 4-H programs each year.
An example of what AgriLife Extension offices throughout the state touting Texas 4-H opportunities in their area might be doing is the 4-H open house in Williamson County.
The event, free and open to the public, will be held in the parking lot of the AgriLife Extension office building, located at 100 Wilco Way in Georgetown, from 6-9 p.m. on Aug. 19.
“This event is a great opportunity for people to see the variety of youth interests that are addressed through these local 4-H clubs,” said Paige McClellan, AgriLife Extension 4-H and youth development agent, Williamson County
McClellan said the open house will be set up in similar fashion to a fair, with booths where members of local clubs talk about club activities and some of the more specific interests of that specific club.
For more information on Texas 4-H open house for Williamson County, contact McClellan at 512-943-3300 or email@example.com.
More about 4-H enrollment
“All 4-H members must be enrolled in at least one project,” Williams said. “When you choose a project, you will be given the opportunity to participate in activities and instruction that will provide a breadth of information and give an overall understanding of that topic.”
He said there are 42 total 4-H projects that are broken into five main groupings:
— Agriculture and Livestock.
— Family and Community Health.
— Leadership and Citizenship.
— Natural Resources.
— Science, Technology, Science and Engineering, STEM.
“Through Texas 4-H, young people can participate in various hands-on activities, learn new skills, serve their community and develop their leadership qualities,” Williams said. “The programs address a wide variety of interests and focus on the development of life skills and individual character.”
He said current or new Texas 4-H members should sign up on 4HOnline at https://texas4-h.tamu.edu/4honline once they have found a project and club that is right for them.
“4HOnline is the official registration system for youth members and adult volunteers directly involved with 4-H,” Williams noted.
He said an active enrollment is required in order to register and participate in all 4-H activities and events. Each year on Aug. 15, all membership in Texas 4-H goes to inactive and all youth and adult volunteers must re-enroll. Adults and youth will need to enroll on 4HOnline and be active to be considered an official member of Texas 4-H. The 4-H year officially begins Sept. 1.
There is a $25 participation fee for 4-H youth members enrolled by Oct. 31, and a $30 participation fee for those enrolled from Nov. 1 to the completion of the 4-H year. Adults pay a $10 volunteer application fee.
Photo: 4-H clubs address a wide variety of youth interests. (Texas A&M AgriLife photo)