Ohio 4-H Highlights : October 2019

  1. JOANN Mini-Grant Spotlight

    Hardin County's Spark Labs on the Go

    Last spring, Ohio 4-H partnered with JOANN for the “Clovers for Kids” campaign, where shoppers could donate to 4-H at checkout.  Through this program the Ohio 4-H Foundation awarded mini-grants to county 4-H programs throughout the state.  Thank you for you for supporting 4-H at your local JOANN store. Read below for more about the programs supported by these contributions.

    Spark Labs on the Go

    At the 2019 Hardin County Fair, 4-H hosted “Spark Lab,”an interactive educational area featuring computer science stations that included virtual reality, robotics and circuits. More than 300 youth visited the Spark Lab during the fair which also included STEM make-it, take-it activities with straw rockets, paper circuits and slime. 

    Mercer County 4-H Camp Mercer County teens making blankets to donate.

    Mercer County 4-H Camp Counselors made eight fleece blankets for the C.A.L.L. Food Pantry to distribute to families in need for this winter. The counselors enjoyed making the blankets friendships while helping community. One counselor shared, “It was fun to help out the community while getting to know my fellow counselors better”. 





    Washington County Pottery Class

    Washington County 4-H camp taught “Pottery Without a Kiln” at their Junior and Senior 4-H Camps. Over 30 campers attended the three-part pottery classes while attending camp this past summer. Pottery made at Washington County 4-H Camp.



  2. Celebration of Youth Raises over $100,000 for 4-H

    Guests at the 2019 Celebration of Youth.

    The 22nd annual 4-H Celebration of Youth was a special evening, bringing in $104,548 for Ohio 4-H Youth Development programs, a 20 percent increase in proceeds from 2018. More than 250 guests at the Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center enjoyed food, auction bidding, and guest speaker Katie Smith. The Hocking County 4-H alumna and coach of the WNBA New York Liberty, shared the impact 4-H made in her life. Smith, a former OSU basketball standout and member of the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, also focused on the importance of the fourth “H” – health. Katie Smith with guests at the 2019 Celebration of Youth.

    Health was also in the spotlight when this year’s Celebration of Youth auction concluded with auctioneer Johnny Regula, asking for $1,000 sponsorships to send Ohio 4-H teens to the National 4-H Healthy Living Summit in Maryland. $18,000 in pledges were received to send the largest group in Ohio 4-H history to the Summit. Johnny Regula during the live ask to sponsor Health Heroes to attend the Healthy Living Summit.

    All proceeds from the event go to the Ohio 4-H Foundation Endowment fund to support new and existing Ohio 4-H programs at the county and state levels, and to build the Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center endowment. It helps ensure 4-H programs and activities continue to meet the needs and interests of Ohio youth.


    A special thanks to this year’s sponsors for their continued support and dedication. Visit our Celebration of Youth page for a list of sponsors and photos of the evening. 

    Guests bidding on silent auction items.

  3. Help Support 4-H Camp Ohio!

    4-H Camp Ohio

    If you are a 4-H alum, summer camp may hold special memories for you. This month, 4-H Camp Ohio is asking for your support to raise money for facility improvements. The 50-year-old restrooms on the west side of camp by the pool are in desperate need of renovation. While they are kept clean and usable, they are dark, unwelcoming and importantly, not ADA accessible.

    The 14 counties that use 4-H Camp Ohio have a goal this month to raise $30,000 for the needed improvements. Combined with additional grants and donations, this amount will result in a functional, compliant facility accessible to all campers. Donations are tax deductible and all contributions will help make the best better at Camp Ohio! Consider donating today.



  4. 4-H Program Provides an International Education for Ohio 4-H Teen

    Vivian Dennis

    Vivian Dennis, 15, shares about her experience with the Ohio 4-H International Program.  Check out this article about her 4-H trip to Japan.



  5. Ohio 4-H Specialty Logo Plate Sales - Available NOW!

    Ohio 4-H license plate

    License plates are more than just a necessary requirement – they can also be an investment in Ohio 4-H members. The Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) is offering a specialty license plate dedicated to Ohio 4-H Youth Development. A portion of the annual plate fees collected from sold and renewed plates is given directly to Ohio 4-H and is earmarked for 4-H programming. Show your support by purchasing an Ohio 4-H license plate at your local BMV deputy registrar or online.

  6. Ohio 4-H Healthy Living Advocates

    (left to right) Piper Brill, Madelyn Smith, and Ivy Smith, all from Franklin County, lead an activity they developed to raise awareness about mental health stigma and ways mental health can be addressed at the individual, group, organizational, and policy levels.

    The fifth year of Ohio 4-H Healthy Living Advocate program is off to a great start. The program, also known as Health Heroes, engages teens in learning about and taking action on health issues.

    This fall, ten new members completed a one-day training and joined with returning members to begin exploring how they make a difference in their communities. Teen mental health, vaping, and healthy eating were topics the group covered at their October meeting. Teens compiled teaching kits and practiced teaching about ways to reduce sodium intake. This teach-back approach works, said Dr. Theresa Ferrari, Extension Specialist, who advises the Health Heroes group, because the teens are learning by doing; they gain confidence as they lead the activities and receive feedback. Matthew Swearingen (Adams), Cara Brown (Seneca),  and Virginia Porter (Delaware County) leading activities from the new Sodium Shakedown  Kit during their October 19 meeting.

    “I became a Health Hero to learn more and advocate for health," said new member Virginia Porter from Delaware County. “I’m so excited for new experiences to come.” In the coming year, some of those new experiences will involve teaching others at the Ohio 4-H Conference and the National 4-H Summit on Healthy Living in Washington, DC. According to returning member Hannah May Borton from Fulton County, these trip experiences are valuable because “you get to build a lot of teamwork and friendships with the people you stay with and while you work together on projects.”  Piper Brill (left) and Alexia Pennington, both from Franklin County, examine beverage containers as they prepare to practice teaching others during the Health Heroes training in September.

    Ferrari said learning how to approach issues is just as important as learning about the issues themselves. “The first step is to start with the facts, then get others involved in making and carrying out a plan,” she said.  While doing this, the teens are developing their leadership skills and are learning about careers in the health field. The 4-H members are leaders in bringing the fourth H – health – to the forefront. 

    Interested in supporting the Ohio 4-H Health Heroes?  Click to donate.

  7. Faces of Ohio 4-H

    Joe Batchelor

    Each month we highlight an Ohio 4-H alum. They have amazing stories to share, from their personal experience in 4-H to how they have given back to the program. This month we are featuring Joe Batchelor, 4-H alum from Coshocton County.

    Joe got his start in 4-H in third grade because he was interested in the public speaking program after watching his father judge that contest at the fair each year. In addition to public speaking, Joe took projects such as cooking and laundry.

    Joe at 4-H Camp Ohio.His 4-H world expanded when he went to 4-H Camp Ohio. Joe still remembers his experiences at 4-H camp as a fourth grader. He didn’t know anyone outside of the city, and it opened his eyes to brand new opportunities. After going to camp every year it was offered, Joe went back to camp to serve as a counselor for four years as well. He met a lot of new people throughout his time at camp, and he is still friends with many of them today. Joe with his hogs.

    Because Joe lived within the city limits of Coshocton, he was not familiar with livestock until his friends from camp introduced him to hog projects. After finally convincing his parents to let him give it a try, Joe took hogs to the fair for his final three years of high school. Joe said, “I transitioned from completely avoiding the livestock barns at the fair to actually raising and showing animals thanks to the friends I made at 4-H Camp Ohio. I was even selected as the Fair King at the Coshocton County Fair in 2014!” 

    When asked about advice for current 4-H members, Joe suggested 4-H members try as many new things as possible, meet as many new people as you can, and do not miss out on public speaking opportunities.  “Being able to try new experiences impacted me as an adult. Because I was able to obtain my Master Speaker Award, I now have the confidence to speak in front of other people, which is critical in any career.” Joe graduated Joe was the 2014 Coshocton County Fair King.from The Ohio State University in 2018, and currently works as the Personal Aide to Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted. He is thankful for all the 4-H experiences that prepared him for this role. 

  8. Calendar of Events

    Fall color at Secrest Arboretum.

    November 2 – ExploreAg Experience with ODA (Reynoldsburg) – A hands-on experience to explore various agricultural careers in Ohio held from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Registration is free, lunch is included. Register here.

    November 13 – Tree Walk (Wooster) – Held at Secrest Arboretum on Wooster Campus from 1 to 2 p.m. Free and open to the public. Click here for more information.

    November 17 – 4-H Pumpkin Party at Cincinnati Museum Center (Cincinnati) – Explore the world of squash and dissect, inspect, and roast seeds while learning about this versatile, nutritious and seasonally available fruit. You’ll have the opportunity to inspect your dissected specimens at 800x magnification, pick up some new recipes and enjoy a small taste test. Event will last from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free for CMC members or included with a discovery ticket. Click here for more information.

    November 17 – Van Wert 4-H through the Years (Van Wert) – Event will be held from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Van Wert Histocial Society. For questions, contact Heather Gottke, 4-H educator in Van Wert County at 419-238-1214.