4-H is a program set up by the United States Department of Agriculture originally in rural areas to help young people become productive citizens by instructing them in useful skills, community service, and personal development. To me 4-h is not only that, but it is a lifestyle. 4h is not something a person can just chose to do one day and become the best, they would have to have the passion and commitment for the lifestyle. The 4h clover is the main symbol for 4-H. The four H’s represent the words head, heart, hands, and health. This coincides with the 4h pledge which states, “I pledge my head to clearer thinking, my heart to greater loyalty, my hands to larger service, and my health to better living, for my club, my community, my country and my world.” This pledge is a constant reminder in my life that everything I do is affecting everyone around me. I have participated in 4-h since I was nine, being part of such an amazing program has made me who I am today.
4-H taught me how to become responsible, independent, and a leader. 4h has helped me form bonds with people that will last a lifetime. Responsibility is something every parent wants their child to learn, through 4-h I learned how to take care of an animal, I had to make sure my animal was properly fed and always had water, I was to make sure the environment he was living in was clean and kept the way a human would want it. That animal was my child for the 6 months I had him. As a nine year old, I was not able to do everything I needed to do to keep my animal alive on my own, but as the years went on and I grew older I was able to become independent and eventually teach younger members of 4-h how to take care of their animals and become independent as well. 4-h has a lot of opportunities that can help you grow, one opportunity that is offered is Junior Fair Board.
JFB is a group for 4-h members between the ages of 15-18 who come together as one and run all of the shows and activities that happen during the week of the County Fair. Learning how to run livestock shows and trying to meet the needs of every person that attends the Hartford Fair is just the beginning of this wonderful opportunity. Putting in countless hours and losing nights of sleep with some of your best friends is all worth it in the end. This program is something that has taught me how to grow as a person and given me countless options to better my future. Throughout these 10 years I have found confidence, independence, and leadership within myself. 4h is not just an organization that allows me to take care of animals, it is a lifestyle